Italy kicks off LTE in four cities as Telecom Italia begins 4G rollout

Italy's largest telco is to launch its LTE services next month, with a clutch of cities set to get coverage before the year's end.

Italy's incumbent telco Telecom Italia will begin offering 4G LTE services from next month.

Telecom Italia customers in Rome, Milan, Turin and Naples will be able to pick up 4G LTE devices and packages from 7 November, the operator announced on Tuesday.

In the meantime, Telecom Italia will continue rolling out its LTE network and aims to have the service live in 20 Italian cities by the end of the year. The telco then plans to take the network to the rest of the country, but has yet to give a timescale for when the rollout will be complete.

Telecom Italia will begin offering its LTE services as a non-smartphone play – among its launch bundles are a €349 annual package including a modem and 20GB per month of data, a tablet and internet bundle which includes a Galaxy Tab 8.9 and 20GB of data for €45 a month over 24 months, or a device-free package with 20GB of data for €34 a month.

Mobile-focused plans will be launched at a later date, the company said.

Telecom Italia's LTE network won't be alone for long – the Italian arms of Vodafone and Three are both also planning to debut 4G services in the coming months.