No iPhone but 20Mbps speeds: KPN gives more details on 4G

The Netherlands' biggest mobile operator has announced its 4G plans, with next-generation services set to go live from next month.
Written by Jo Best, Contributor

The Netherlands' biggest mobile operator KPN will begin rolling out 4G services in the country from next month.

The operator's 4G network will go live in the northern part of the Randstad - an area that covers the Netherlands' four biggest cities: Utrecht, Rotterdam, The Hague and the capital, Amsterdam - in early February, with the southern half of the Ranstad to follow. KPN began testing 4G services with enterprise users in Utrecht and The Hague last year.

By the middle of 2013, the 4G network will cover half of the population, with nationwide coverage in place by summer 2014.

4G users can expect an average of download speed of 20Mbps, with a theoretical maximum of 50Mbps, and an average upload speed of 10Mbps, with a maximum of 25 Mbps, KPN said.

The 4G packages, announced on Tuesday, will be available to consumers from 4 February for tablets, smartphones and dongles. Among the new additions will be a monthly mobile tariff Hi XL 4G, which comes with 4GB of 4G data for €32.50 ($43.30), along with data-only options including the 4G Internet Bundle with 5GB of data for €35 per month.

KPN will kick off its 4G push with a range of devices, including the Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820, Samsung S3 4G, Huawei Ascend P1, and Samsung's Galaxy Note 10.1 4G, as well as a Huawei dongle and 4G Wi-Fi HotSpot.

There won't be any iPhone 5 on KPN's 4G for the moment, however. "The iPhone 5 has not yet been optimised for all the frequencies on which mobile internet is offered in the Netherlands. Apple is expected to make its supply suitable for these frequencies sometime soon. The current device cannot be used yet on the frequencies for which KPN has obtained a licence and which will offer 4G," the company said. KPN's 4G network uses the 800MHz spectrum, while Apple's iPhone supports 1800MHz.

KPN paid €1.35bn for 4G spectrum licences in December. Fellow mobile operators Tele2, T-Mobile and Vodafone also picked up some of the 41 licences available in last year's auction.

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