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O2 bags BT to beef up 4G network ahead of summer launch

O2 will be relying on BT's behind-the-scenes tech to get its 4G network up to speed.

O2 has signed a deal with BT to help provide the nuts and bolts for its upcoming 4G network.

The oxygenated operator has inked a 10-year deal with BT, which will see the monolithic phone company providing O2 with extra behind-the-scenes hardware to keep its network up to speed.

BT says it will "build a high-capacity transmission network" for O2. The news follows rumours last week that O2 was making a 4G-flavoured deal with the telecoms giant.

Although it walked away from the recent 4G auction with plenty of new bandwidth, O2 failed to acquire any high-frequency spectrum in the bidding war. BT, meanwhile, snapped up several slices of 2.6GHz bandwidth, so it could be using some of that to strengthen O2's network.

O2 used to be part of BT, but split in 2001 to strike out on its own. The network told me it was expecting to launch its 4G service in the summer, but no specific date has yet been given.

Rival networks Vodafone and Three will also be introducing 4G services later this year.

EE is currently the only operator to provide Brits with 4G -- something that's reflected in the network's high-price tariffs. Three has already vowed not to make 4G any more expensive, so fingers crossed the high-speed data tech gets a little cheaper once other networks get involved, eh?

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