Press Release | 11 Apr 2019

Vodafone switches on 5G technology in Newbury

Vodafone has switched on live 5G testing in Newbury as part of its UK-wide trial of the new, high-speed mobile service. Using technology called Active Antenna (Massive MiMo)*, 5G mobile data traffic has started streaming across our network from a site near our Newbury campus.

5G will play a large part in the future of business and the public sector. Due to its fast response time, 5G is ideal for connecting machinery, healthcare systems, and even traffic lights and car parks to improve congestion in towns and cities. 3D holographic calls – a technology we have already successfully tested in Newbury – are also possible with 5G.

When compatible 5G handsets and devices arrive later in the year, customers will be able to load a web page within the blink of an eye and stream a movie over 5G without buffering. 5G will also ensure faster data speeds for customers in congested areas such as city and town centres, train stations and event venues.

As well as investment in our network in the town, our Newbury campus is also currently being transformed into our main UK technology centre. A multi-million pound budget will create the network control centre of the future, making Newbury our main research and development facility.

Vodafone UK’s Chief Technology Officer Scott Petty said: “Newbury is the home of Vodafone and where many of our UK firsts have taken place, including the first ever mobile voice call in 1985, first text message in 1992 and the first 5G holographic call last year. It’s only right it should be one of the first places in the UK to receive 5G. With our new technology centre, we will ensure that Newbury continues to be the birthplace of our future technologies.”

About Vodafone UK

Vodafone UK is a technology communications company that connects people, businesses and devices to help our customers benefit from digital innovation. Our services span mobile, fixed-line connections, home and office broadband, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

We have a strong track record as a tech pioneer, making the UK’s first mobile phone call, sending the first text message, and making the UK’s first live holographic call using 5G in 2018. We were the first to start carrying live 5G traffic from a site in Salford, Greater Manchester and now have 5G in locations across Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain as well as the UK. Meanwhile, our 4G network coverage currently reaches over 99% of the UK population.

Today, Vodafone serves more than 18 million mobile and fixed-line customers in the UK. Vodafone is the largest provider of full fibre in the UK – our superfast broadband services are now available to nearly 12 million homes across the UK.

Sustainability is also at the heart of what we do: as of 1 July 2021, 100% of the grid electricity we use in the UK is certified to be from renewable sources.

For more information about Vodafone UK, please visit:

Vodafone UK Media Relations

Telephone: +44 (0) 1635 693 693


Twitter: @VodafoneUKNews


Vodafone Limited

Registered Office: Vodafone House, The Connection, Newbury, Berkshire RG14 2FN

Registered in England No: 1471587