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(Pocket-lint) - EE is trialling its 5G network for consumer use for the first time. It has started its live trial in London to find out how the technology holds up in a busy area.

What that means for you, though, is likely minimal at present.


That's because the live trial is currently limited to Canary Wharf - specifically, Montgomery Square in Canary Wharf. And while that does cover 150,000 people who work there every weekday, it's still a relatively small area.

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Also, you need a 5G compatible device - with no actual 5G handsets commercially available yet.

You could be forgiven for wondering, therefore, why EE is trialling 5G publicly, if no-one can use it. But it's vital for the network as it gives it an indication of how a 5G switch-on affects current 4G phone use in congested areas, where mobile data usage is at its highest.

It will be testing its 5G spectrum for performance, speeds and coverage in the area for two weeks and that will benefit you in the long run.

For example, according to British newspaper The Mirror - which is housed in Canary Wharf - the trial has so far reached speeds of up to 1.25Gbps. That's much faster than any wired home broadband is capable of.

And while it is unlikely your next smartphone will be capable of getting those speeds, when other handsets are simultaneously connected, it is clear 5G will dramatically improve current data speeds.

EE will also be rolling out more trials over hotspots in the UK in the coming months, as it continues its high capacity zone testing. This will include 10 more sites in East London in October.

And then, once trials have been concluded, EE has confirmed that Canary Wharf will be one of the first sites with fully established 5G coverage. So if you do live or work in that area, you will be one of the first to properly benefit.

Writing by Rik Henderson.