Telecoms giant Vodafone has announced a start date for its 5G services in Birmingham.

The company says it will switch on the superfast mobile technology on July 3 in Birmingham and six other cities across the UK.

It is also planning to launch the service in Wolverhampton, Stoke-on-Trent and ten other locations by the end of 2019.

Its first smartphones are due to go on sale this month alongside routers for home and office use and it is also offering 5G roaming in the UK, Germany, Italy and Spain.

Alongside the announcement of a start date, Vodafone has also signed a new sponsorship deal with Coventry-based Wasps Rugby and Wasps Netball teams and the city's Ricoh Arena.

The Government announced last September that Birmingham and the West Midlands had been selected to trial the new technology which is expected to ensure faster data speed in congested areas, such as busy shopping centres, sporting events and music concerts.

It is also set to transform industries such as health services and online video streaming and gaming and play a role in the development of new technology such as driverless cars and mobile virtual reality applications.

Vodafone UK's chief executive Nick Jeffery said: "We started our 5G journey more than three years ago.

"It means we can announce the largest launch of 5G in the UK and be the first to announce 5G roaming.

"It means that UK businesses can lead the world in adopting 5G to boost productivity and attract investment.

"It means consumers can get the fastest mobile speeds ever and it means that our public sector will be able to adopt new services to improve healthcare, social services and housing."

 

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street added: "I am delighted that Vodafone has set a date for 5G to launch in Birmingham.

"The latest technology, which will be at least ten times quicker than the 4G networks currently in place, will be a huge boost to both residents and businesses.

"Not only will it allow commuters to stream music and videos and browse the web faster than ever before but it also opens up economic opportunities for businesses to help them stay ahead of the competition.

"The West Midlands is a fantastic place to invest and it is great Vodafone has recognised this.

"I am sure many more firms will follow their lead."