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Orange and T-Mobile to start sharing 3G signals

Everything Everywhere is about to turn on network sharing for its T-Mobile and Orange mobile broadband services, a year after it enabled the same for voice and text
Written by David Meyer, Contributor

Everything Everywhere is to let customers of its T-Mobile and Orange brands use both networks' signals for 3G mobile broadband, the company has said.

Everything Everywhere shop

Everything Everywhere has said customers on T-Mobile and Orange will be able to use both networks' signals for 3G mobile broadband, from next week. Photo credit: Karen Friar

One year ago, T-Mobile and Orange began allowing customers to use both networks for 2G voice and SMS services. On Monday, parent company Everything Everywhere said the "big 3G switch-on" will start next week, making it possible for those customers to get wider mobile broadband coverage.

"Not only will customers be able to talk in places they weren't able to before, they'll also now be able to access the internet, social networks or download emails at improved speeds, in more places," Everything Everywhere chief Olaf Swantee said in a statement.

The company also plans to bring in "additional 2G improvements" to boost the voice and text side of T-Mobile and Orange's network sharing. The two operators joined forces last year through Everything Everywhere, a joint venture co-owned by parent companies France Telecom and Deutsche Telekom.

When the 2G network-sharing switch-on occurred, customers had to register to use the other network's signal. Everything Everywhere told ZDNet UK on Monday that this is no longer the case, and the 3G network sharing will not be opt-in.

Instead, customers will receive a text message telling them they can use both signals, and advising them to turn their handsets off and on again to allow this to happen.

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