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February 23, 2015updated 19 Aug 2016 4:02pm

‘Tech hub’ Bristol gets less 4G than rural Utah

If remote Elberta can get 90 percent 4G coverage, why can't the UK?

By Alexander Sword

Bristol, often touted as the UK’s new tech hub, has less 4G coverage than a small town in Utah with a population of 300, new research from Expert Market shows.

While rural Elberta receives over 90 percent 4G coverage from all four major US providers, Bristol only achieves coverage from EE. Even EE’s coverage is limited; while the provider claims to offer 4G there, Ofcom records coverage as zero percent on premises and roads.

Vodafone and O2, meanwhile, have no plans to bring 4G coverage to the city.

The findings tie into previous reports that the UK’s digital infrastructure is sorely lagging. Virgin Media Business and others have slammed the connectivity in London’s Tech City and a recent House of Lords report has warned that the UK will fall behind if there isn’t more investment.

"These findings are very alarming for the UK," commented Lucile Michaut, Europe Marketing Manager at Expert Market.

"If we are not able to be competent and valued competitors to the United States and other major nations, businesses will struggle to develop and the seriousness of our image as a country for growing technologies and start-ups will be impacted."

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UPDATE: O2 contacted CBR to draw attention to its announcement earlier this month that it has started to switch on its 4G service in Bristol as part of an investment in the area’s connectivity, contradicting the information given in the above release.

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