O2 UK

O2 UK logo

Company Name

Telefónica UK Limited

Ownership Type

Subsidiary

Ownership/Controlling Entity

MNC

02

3G UMTS Frequency Bands

Company Overview

Telefonica UK Limited, trading as O2, is a national telecommunications provider operating in the United Kingdom. O2 was formed in 1985 as Cellnet, a joint venture between BT Group and Securicor which became wholly owned by BT Group in 2000 who the new mobile network operator O2 in 2002. O2 was wholly acquired by Spanish Telefonica Group in 2006, becoming a subsidiary known as Telefonica UK Limited.

The company began providing 3G UMTS services over B1 (2100 MHz) between February 2005 and September 2007 when the network rollout was deemed completed. A B8 (900 MHz) carrier was introduced in March 2011 to improve network coverage. Data services were upgraded to HSPA+ during 2012 and DC-HSPA+ in 2013.

4G LTE services were first launched in August 2013 over the B20 (800 MHz) band. By early 2016 O2 had refarmed 5 MHz of its 2G spectrum to implement B3 (1800 MHz) and 10 MHz of its 3G 2100 spectrum to provide an additional B1 (2100 MHz) LTE carrier. The new bands were immediately used to implement LTE-Advanced using 2C CA. 4X4 MIMO has been implemented since April 2018.

After securing 40 MHz of 2.3 GHz spectrum in early 2018, O2 launched two 20 MHz B40 (2300 MHz) LTE carriers. There are unconfirmed reports of 8T8R MIMO being implemented.

O2 UK 5G

At an April 2018 Ofcom auction, O2 secured a total of 80 MHz of 5G-suitable TDD spectrum in the 2.3 and 3.5 GHz ranges (40 MHz each). In February 2019 O2 confirmed it would begin construction of its 5G network infrastructure, beginning in the cities of Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London, with a switch-on to take place in 2020. O2 announced that it would launch a 5G trial network at its Millbrook Proving Ground in June 2019 using n40 (3400 MHz) and n78 (3500 MHz) carriers.

3G UMTS Network Information

Details on UMTS network deployments are shown below. Data are often incomplete due to commercial nature. Consult dossier text for further details.

Launch Date 2005-02 Status Active
UMTS BandPacket DataStatus
Shut Down Announced
4G LTE Network Information

Details on LTE network deployments are shown below. Data are often incomplete due to commercial nature. Consult dossier text for further details.

Evolution Status Active [Launched 2013-08]
Max. MIMO Max. Modulation
Carrier Aggregation Features
LTE BandChannel WidthStatus
10 MHz Active
5G NR Network Information

Details on 5G NR network deployments are shown below. Data are often incomplete due to commercial nature. Consult dossier text for further details.

Type Status Trialling
Max. MIMO Max. Modulation
Carrier Aggregation - Features -
NR BandChannel WidthStatus
40 MHz Trialling
40 MHz Trialling
IoT Network - NB-IoT (LTE Cat-NB1)
Technology Status Trialling
Band - Launch Date -
IoT Network - eMTC (LTE Cat-M1)
Technology Status Trialling
Band - Launch Date -

Services Available

As specialists in 3G, 4G, and 5G cellular technologies, our R-Spectrum team provides in-country technical services to most regions around the world. Operating on a contract basis we are often sent to remote and isolated regions to assist companies in establishing voice and data communications.

Through our R-Spectrum team, we help our clients visualise and understand mobile signal issues by offering a range of radio frequency modelling services for 2G GSM, 3G UMTS, 4G LTE, and 5G NR cellular technologies. The first step to solving any problem is to understand the problem.

News & Developments

Vodafone Limited (“Vodafone”) and O2 Telefónica UK Limited (“O2”) today announced that they have agreed to share 5G active equipment, such as radio antennas, on joint network sites across the UK. This means more people will get 5G sooner, helping to build a competitive digital economy and encouraging innovative new services that use 5G’s speed and greater reliability.