Three’s 4G network is live! First batch of customers activated this morning

It’s finally happening! Ordinary customers (as against staff, beta testers, engineers, journalists and bloggers) on Three are finding themselves able to use its new 4G network, subject to having a compatible handset and being in an area of coverage.

I’ve heard so many different dates givenover the last month or two that I was becoming quite cynical, and decided to just wait and see what actually happened. About the only thing that was certain was the planned activation of everyone by the end of Q1 (March).

The latest reported schedule was for activations to begin on Monday February 3rd and continue until the start of March, presumably being completed in time for Three’s 11th birthday (March 3rd). Earlier than the deadline stated by the CEO, but still a lot longer than the December a lot of people were originally led to believe.

An engineer from Three posting on a Digital Spy forum reported that some network instability meant waiting at least 48 hours without any significant downtime – changing the new planned time to 0930 this morning (Wednesday).

And, true to his word, it now seems that it did happen!

However, what hasn’t happened is users being sent a text message to confirm they’re now able to use 4G. SIM updates (to make sure the 4G/LTE option now appears on some branded handsets) are generally silent, so without any accompanying text a lot of people may not even know if they’ve been included. [As a thought; Three might be waiting to send out text announcements once it knows the process has been successful].

The only way to know for now is to go to a 4G covered area and look, which isn’t perhaps the easiest thing for Londoners having to endure the crippling tube strike on the same day! Tip: You might need to reboot your phone for the SIM update to take effect.

If you weren’t activated today, don’t despair too much as at least it’s happening and the long wait is nearly over.

This article will be updated as and when more information comes through.

Have you been upgraded yet?

If you’ve now got access to Three’s 4G service, please let me know in the comments below – and link to any speed tests you’ve done, as well as stating the location of the tests.

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