Commenting on the recent issues surrounding 4G, and in particular defining what the communications standard actually is, Ian Campbell, vice-president of Airtel-Vodafone, said:
‘Our view is that describing current packages as being 4G when the licences have not been released yet is very misleading to customers. 4G in the true sense of the term allows telecoms operators to offer high-speed internet to users with a quality of service guarantee.
‘Thus, 4G technology will give consumers a credible alternative to fixed-line broadband and allow users to download and view HD movies or play online games on the move.
‘This technology cannot be released into the market until the CICRA allows operators to use the radio spectrum required. When 4G licences are released, all three operators will need to upgrade their infrastructure and transmission equipment. Consumers will then be required to buy the next generation of 4G enabled devices. All devices in the market today will continue to work on a 4G network, but they will not be able to take full advantage of the high-speed capability and quality of service guarantees; they are not 4G-enabled.’