EE has announced it has switched on 5G in Middlesbrough, with eight places now connected across the North East on its network.

Middlesbrough is among 13 new towns announced by EE to receive the latest mobile network technology. EE has already brought 5G services to several towns and cities in Chester-le-Street, Jarrow, Washington, Newcastle, North Shields, South Shields and Sunderland.

EE launched the UK’s first 5G service in May 2019 and has now expanded to 125 towns and cities across the UK. The mobile network operator was also today named the UK’s no.1 network for gaming. According to the latest independent testing by RootMetrics, EE’s network recorded the fastest aggregate median download speed of any network, the lowest packet loss, and the lowest jitter** during Rootmetrics UK-wide testing.

Network insights from EE show increased appetite for mobile gaming. The launch of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S in November 2020 saw peak traffic for gaming services increase by more than 50 per cent compared to the same time the month before. Mobile traffic for PlayStation alone increased almost three-fold between October and November 2020.

Marc Allera, CEO of BT’s Consumer business, said: “Today’s recognition shows the continued investment we’re making to keep our customers connected to what matters most to them, whether that’s enjoying the latest gaming release, sharing video calls with loved ones, or online learning. Our award-winning 5G service is now available in 125 towns and cities across the UK, and our rollout continues so we can bring the best mobile experience to even more people and places.”

Liz Needleman, BT Group North of England, said: “I’m delighted that both consumers and businesses in Middlesbrough will now benefit from 5G technology during this unprecedented time when connectivity is more important than ever before.

“Middlesbrough joins seven other places in the North East that now have access to 5G to help connect them to faster broadband speeds and more reliable connections.

“As demand continues to rise for 5G technology, this announcement will help the people of Middlesbrough stay in touch with friends and family as well as allow businesses to take advantage of the fastest and most reliable connections.”

Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: “Digital tech and communication is central to all our lives, and never has that been more true than during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The drive for greater connectivity is only going to grow over the coming years, and it’s vital that Middlesbrough is at the cutting edge of this latest industrial revolution.

“The latest 5G technology will play a key role so it’s fantastic that EE has connected Middlesbrough to its network which will further enhance our reputation as the place to live, work and do business.”

In addition to Middlesbrough, the other new towns to receive EE 5G today are: Burton-upon-Trent, Cannock, Grimsby, Ipswich, Leamington Spa, Neath, Portishead, Tamworth, St Albans, Halifax, Stockport and Swinton.

EE named UK’s No.1 network for gaming comes as EE is also set to imminently launch an exciting new mobile focused gaming bundle. Further details on this, including availability and eligibility – will be announced very shortly.