4G Without LandLine Is Coming To (London) Town

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Jun 06 2014
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Britain has a massive variations in broadband speeds, ranging from lowest 0.60 Mbps to average 17.8 Mbps, to top speed of 57.58 Mbps. The UK government had invested £1.2 billion (US$2 billion, RM6.5 billion) with additional additional £250 million (US$420 million, RM1,355 million) last year to ensure at least 95% UK homes have access to ‘superfast’ broadband (defined as above 24 Mbps) by 2017.


For decades, BT has been the main service provider, and households are literally forced to have a landline (primarily owned by BT except Virgin Media lines) to get an internet connection. But that is about to change, thanks to Relish, a new service provided by UK Broadband, a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based PCCW. The new offering allows users to connect to the internet via a home router without the need for a landline.

UK Britain Relish Broadband - Without Wires

Claimed to be an alternative to ADSL and fibre fixed line broadband, UK Broadband’s Relish 4G home broadband product offers average download speeds of 13 Mbps in central London and a mind-boggling top speed of 65 Mbps. Mobile devices, PCs and smart TVs can now connect to the router via WiFi, and the router connects back to the network via a variant of 4G.


The price? For unlimited home package, it’s a mere £20 (US$33, RM108) a month (including VAT) plus the cost of a router at £50 (US$84, RM271). But if you were to sign a yearly contract, the router is thrown in free with the package. This is “Home Broadband” plan. The other plans are “Business Broadband”, “Mobile Broadband (Pocket Hub)” and “Dedicated Business Internet”.

UK Britain Relish Broadband Launch - 2

Mobile broadband plan is for , well, mobile users where where you’ve to carry a small dongle or Mi-Fi called a “pocket hub” (a Huawei-supplied mobile router). The data plans for such mobile solution starts at £10 (US$16.80, RM54.20) for 1GB data, rising to £20 (US$33, RM108) for 35GB data for road warrior.


As usual, this mobile device is free when you subscribe a yearly contract for for users who plan to test it on 30-days period, the device is £25 (US$42, RM135). Here’s a small good news – Relish home broadband customers who add mobile broadband to their package qualify for a £5 (US$8.40, RM27.10) per month discount. Relish is using it’s own broadband spectrum but will fall back using Three’s HSPA+ 3G networks, ensuring connectivity anywhere in UK.

UK Britain Relish Broadband Launch - 3

For now, the Relish service is available within central London, roughly an area covering Old Street, Kensington, Canary Wharf and Southwark. Interestingly, a survey shows Londoners have (or rather forced to?) been paying a whopping £193 million (US$324 million, RM1,046 million) in landlines charges every year, of which is unnecessary.


It seems Relish aims to disrupt the London broadband market with a combination of instant connection, plug-and-play setup, unlimited data, and transparent pricing could give traditional player BT a run for its money. Where it will take BT guys 15 working days to install a landline from the time of an order, you can get Relish 4G broadband the next working day, regardless whether it’s for home or business.

UK Britain Relish Broadband Launch - 1

The competition is getting tougher in UK broadband market. A joint venture between Coventry City Council and CityFibre may see Coventry become one of the world’s fastest cities, joining the likes of Tokyo and Seoul, when the ultra-fast gigabit connections delivering 1,024 Mbps materializes.


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