UK operator Virgin Media O2 revealed it installed more than 1,300 small cells across London, claiming the largest deployment of any major operator as it presses on with its 4G and 5G network rollout.

Virgin Media O2 highlighted benefits including boosting capacity and coverage in dense urban areas, with its small cells having a typical range of between 80 metres and 120 metres and being installed on existing street furniture.

It stated the live small cells run on the 1800MHz frequency, with some trials in 2.6GHz also underway.

It also outlined goals to expand small cells to other parts of the UK and provide coverage at the Commonwealth Games being held from late July to early August in Birmingham.

Virgin Media O2 CTO Jeanie York said building a 5G network is a complex job and it was looking at ways to create efficiencies.

“Technologies such as small cells help us increase network bandwidth, which allows us to keep up with customer demand, with data traffic levels increasing 34 per cent year-on-year.”

Virgin Media O2 worked with Cellnex UK, Freshwave, Ontix and the City of London on the rollout, among others.

It is also trialling 5G-ready bus shelters in London in partnership with Freshwave.