Three adds a million customers and upgrades network to accelerate growth
- Network upgrade to extend Ultrafast experience to 50% of population by year’s end
- 1800Mhz spectrum acquisition doubles capacity
Three, the UK’s fastest growing mobile operator grew by more than 1.04 million customers over the past year to 8.8 million, adding 301,000 customers in the last quarter alone.
The growth in customers, driven by Three’s smartphone focus, is being supported by a nationwide programme to upgrade its network. Three is deploying DC-HSDPA technology and increasing the speed of its backhaul, the data pipes used to connect its sites to the internet, as it moves to an Ultrafast network experience.
Three’s new Ultrafast network will reach over half the UK population by the end of 2012, with more than 80% of the population covered by April 2013. 39% of the population already have access to the Ultrafast network, with coverage currently focused on 50 of the UK’s biggest cities and towns.
The ongoing network programme will see customers benefit from increased speeds that will be more than enough for data-hungry services like HD video streaming. Three customers in existing Ultrafast areas using DC-HSDPA devices like iPhone 5, the Sony Xperia T and the Windows Phone 8X by HTC are already reporting peak speeds over 20Mbps. iPad mini, iPad with Retina display and the Huawei E3521 dongle are also DC-HSDPA enabled.
Three will add further capacity to its Ultrafast network in 2013 by deploying LTE technology. This follows Ofcom’s approval of Three’s acquisition of 2x15Mhz of radio spectrum at 1800Mhz. The transfer effectively doubles Three’s overall spectrum capacity and provides further room for customer growth.
Dave Dyson, Chief Executive of Three UK, said: “We have led the adoption of smartphones in the UK by giving our customers great coverage, fast speeds and compelling price plans. These network improvements are designed to maintain our position as the fastest growing UK mobile operator.
“Our Ultrafast network is giving more people in more places access to an even faster mobile internet experience.
“But mobile internet is about more than just technology. All-you-can-eat data at prices to suit everyone and peace of mind bundles that guarantee no surprise data bills are designed to allow customers to get the most enjoyment from their smartphones.”
Three’s growth plans are being matched by the launch of an 800-strong recruitment drive in October that will add nearly 400 sales and service roles at its Glasgow office and 400 across its high street retail stores and Maidenhead office.
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Notes to Editors
Three UK added 1,042,000 new customers in the 12-months ending September 30th.
List of 50 towns and cities included in Three’s 2012 Ultrafast network rollout:
Aberdeen, Birmingham, Blackpool, Bolton, Bournemouth, Bradford, Brighton, Bristol, Cambridge, Cardiff, Coventry, Derby, Dudley, Dundee, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Gloucester, Huddersfield, Ipswich, Kingston Upon Hull, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, London, Luton, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Northampton, Norwich, Nottingham, Oldham, Oxford, Peterborough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Preston, Reading, Sheffield, Slough, Southend on Sea, Southampton, Stockport, Stoke on Trent, Swindon, Watford, West Bromwich, Wolverhampton and York. Belfast will have Ultrafast from Q1 2013.
|Name||Three Corporate PR Team|
|Phone||020 3725 2339|
Three is a communications company. We are focused on challenging the industry to make mobile better for everyone.
We want to give customers a quality mobile experience and address the industry issues that frustrate them.
We were the first UK network to introduce all-you-can-eat data and offer 4G at no extra cost. We let customers roam abroad with their domestic bundle for no extra charge and do not charge for calling 0800 numbers.
We continue to look at ways of improving the experience we offer our customers.
Three carries over 45% of the UK’s mobile data. Our 3G network covers 98% of the UK population.
We launched 4G in 2014 and plan to have 50 cities and 200 towns covered by 4G by December 2014. By the end of 2015 98% of the population will be able to access 4G through a combination of new sites and deploying new spectrum.
Three is a member of the HWL group of companies, with investments in mobile operations in Australia, Austria, Denmark, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Macau, Sri Lanka, Sweden and Vietnam.
Three employs over 4,400 people across its offices in Maidenhead, Glasgow and Reading and its 345 retail stores.
For more information visit www.three.co.uk.