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4G two weeks away but 2G still used by 4 million people in the UK

The launch of the UK’s first 4G cellular network is two weeks away, but some four million consumers are still using 2G networks, according to data published by tech support company Geek Squad.

Provider EE is hoping to enjoy its limited monopoly of the new mobile standard when it launches on 30 October, ahead of competing mobile networks. Offering 4G support to the iPhone 5, HTC One XL and a forthcoming Samsung Galaxy S3 LTE, EE is targeting a consumer base with an early adoption ethos.

But with so many consumers yet to make the jump to 3G, which has been widely available here since 2004, it seems that data speeds may be a non-priority to a section of the buying public.

(opens in new tab)Britain has demonstrated a tendency to lag when it comes to adopting new mobile standards - 4G service, which has been available in most major US cities since 2010, has been bafflingly slow to come to the UK. And a cellular data speed disparity has become increasingly apparent, with mobile Internet speeds in New York estimated to be four times faster than those in London (opens in new tab).

However, some measures have been taken to move away from this lagging pace. The recent announcement of a new £35 million 5G development centre indicates a UK desire to place itself at the front of innovation in telecommunications.