• EE will support customers in Warrington to upgrade ahead of 3G switching off in the week of 17th July
  • EE has a comprehensive 4G network in the town but customers who don’t move will still remain connected to calls and texts over 2G
  • Scheme is a local pilot ahead of the nationwide retirement of EE’s 3G network in early 2024

EE customers in Warrington will be supported to move to 4G or 5G as part of a pilot withdrawal of its 3G service in the town the week of 17th July. This localised pilot scheme will be used to support EE’s nationwide retirement of 3G technology in early 2024.

95 percent of EE customers in Warrington no longer use 3G data, with residents, commuters, and local businesses that have already transitioned to 4G and 5G benefitting from a faster, more reliable, and secure mobile experience.

As more customers reap the benefits of modern mobile networks, the use of 3G on the EE network has fallen to record low levels across the UK and accounts for less than 0.6 percent of all downloaded data and just seven percent of all voice traffic; a 73 percent decrease since January 2020.

Customers using older 3G handsets will still be able to make calls and send texts over 2G as normal but will need to use Wi-Fi or move to a 4G or 5G device to access the internet on their mobile phone. Customers still using some of EE’s older pay monthly plans could find they save money on their phone bill by upgrading*.

All impacted customers will be contacted over the coming weeks, with EE’s customer care teams offering dedicated support to more vulnerable customers to help their transition to a modern mobile network.

A new era of mobile connectivity

EE’s multi-million-pound investment in Warrington has enabled all its sites to be upgraded to 4G, and several of them to 5G, improving the speed, coverage, and reliability for mobile users living and working in the town. EE’s 4G network in Warrington provides more widespread connectivity than 3G, empowering more customers to stay connected to the people and things they love most.

Mobile operators, both in the UK and around the world, have committed to retiring 3G technology in the coming years. By supporting the transition to modern networks now, EE will repurpose network spectrum to deliver enhanced 4G and 5G mobile experiences for communities across the country.

Putting mobile at the heart of the community

Owing to their improved speed and capacity, modern mobile networks are already having a positive impact on the local community in Warrington. BT Group – the parent company of EE – is helping create smarter and more efficient healthcare services for NHS patients through its virtual ward and patient monitoring programme which is being trialled at GP practices across the town.

With 4G and 5G mobile connectivity at their heart, these virtual wards give NHS and other healthcare providers tools to manage patient care, including apps, AI monitoring and online patient consultation solutions – helping enhance the treatment process while reducing the strain on the UK’s healthcare service.

Getting ready for 3G retirement

Here are five steps customers can take to make sure they are ready for 3G retirement:

1. Check 4G and 5G mobile coverage in their local area using EE’s coverage checker.

2. Text ‘Handset’ to 150 to see if their mobile phone already supports 4G Calling or Wi-Fi Calling and get advice on how to upgrade if needed.

3. Check or ask a family member to ensure that 4G and/or 5G Calling is turned on in their mobile phone settings. 4G Calling may be referred to as LTE Calling or VoLTE on some phones.

4. Turn ‘Wi-Fi calling’ on in their mobile phone settings.

5. Visit the EE website or speak to a colleague in store to get expert advice on 3G retirement and what it means.

To learn more about EE’s approach to 3G retirement and the benefits of modern mobile networks, please visit:


Notes to editors:

* Based on customers with legacy Orange and/or T-Mobile pay monthly data plans who could secure an equivalent 4G mobile data plan with EE at a lower monthly price.


About EE:

EE runs the UK's biggest and fastest mobile network, offering superfast connections in more places than any other operator. EE brought the first 4G network to the UK in October 2012 and launched the UK’s first 5G network in May 2019.

EE’s mobile network has received extensive independent recognition, including being named the UK’s no.1 5G network by RootMetrics® in 2020 and 2021, and the UK’s best overall network by RootMetrics® every year since 2014, as well as being named Network of the Year at the 2022 Mobile Industry Awards.

As well as delivering mobile services to consumers, small and medium businesses, corporate customers and Government programmes, EE also provides home and business broadband using both 4G and fixed line connections.

EE is committed to being number one for service in the industry and has nearly 600 shops across the UK. EE remains the only mobile provider to answer 100% of customer calls in the UK and Ireland and was recognised as the UK’s Best Large Contact Centre by the UK Customer Experience Awards 2018 and Welsh Contact Centre Awards 2019. EE was awarded The Sunday Times’ Best 100 Companies to Work for in 2018 and 2019, as well as being named Best Employer 2018 by the European Contact Centre & Customer Service awards.

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