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Research has indicated that UK mobile networks have room for improvement where internet upload and download speeds are concerned.

RootMetrics, an IHS Markit company, published a survey showing that just over half (53 per cent) of mobile broadband customers are satisfied with the speeds currently on offer.

Looking at the performance of particular providers, the study found that Three and EE have the highest levels of customer satisfaction with speeds - 58 per cent and 57 per cent respectively.

Just over half (51 per cent) of O2 users said they are content with their current mobile broadband speed.

RootMetrics claimed its findings show that the market is now very much in need of wide-scale 5G deployment if the likes of EE, O2, Three and Vodafone want to keep their subscribers happy.

While 5G offers improved speed and more bandwidth thanks to higher frequencies, it also brings increased infrastructure costs and complexity.

The main reason for this is that 5G requires small cell infrastructure to be placed close to users, unlike 4G which utilises large, centralised cellular towers.

Kevin Hasley, Head of Product at RootMetrics and Executive Director of Performance Benchmark at IHS Markit, said the impact of 5G will initially be felt in cities and urban areas, where it will become a "ubiquitous technology for connectivity", replacing Wi-Fi.

"At the moment operators in the UK are involved in a bit of a cat and mouse game with each other and government about who will invest first in the infrastructure," he added.

"Clearly mobile operators need to plan their capital expenditure carefully, but 5G will be a key battleground to winning subscribers in the near future and there is first-mover advantage here."

EE recently announced plans to conduct the UK's first live 5G trial in London this October.

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