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iPad mini 4G on sale from EE today

Customers wanting to get their hands on the cut-down iPad tablet running on a 4G network can do so from Thursday in the UK.

EE customers can buy an iPad mini on the country's only national 4G network from today.

The device, which sports a 7.9-inch display rather than the 9.7-inch found on the full-size iPad, is available on two-year deals starting from £25.99 per month.

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"EE will offer iPad mini, and iPad with Retina display, with a range of data plans that will allow customers to connect to the UK's first 4G mobile network, with speeds typically five times faster than 3G," the company - the amalgam of T-Mobile and Orange in the UK- said on Thursday.

While EE customers will be able to use the device at 4G LTE speeds — which in ZDNet testing has ranged between 6Mbps and 45mbps  the device will also be available on the Orange and T-Mobile networks where it can use HSPA+ and DC-HSPA connectivity, offering speeds somewhere between 3G and 4G.

Customers on the Orange or T-Mobile networks can buy the device on 24-month plans from £21 per month, EE said. Opting for the faster, slightly more expensive , 4G service at £25.99 per month will give customers 3GB of data usage. Bumping the allowance up to 5GB takes the cost to £30.99 per month, or 8GB for £35.99.

EE kick-started its 4G service at the end of October, but was criticised for the low data limits — particularly the 500MB deals — that could potentially see one month's worth of allowance being used up in around six minutes.