EE Limited

EE Limited

EE (formerly Everything Everywhere) is a division of BT Group (British Telecom).  EE operates as a mobile network and internet service provider. EE was acquired by BT in January 2016. EE’s headquarters is located in Hatfield, UK. The company maintains approximately 700 retail stores throughout the country.

 

EE limited is the largest mobile network operator in the UK, as well as the largest operator of 4G services in Europe. EE Limited operates as a second consumer division alongside BT Consumer following BT’s new organizational structure.

BT is combining its BT Consumer and EE division into the new BT Consumer division that encompasses three brands: BT; EE; and Plusnet. This change is effective April 1, 2018.

 

History

The company was established in April 2010 through the merger of Deutsche Telekom (T-Mobile UK) and France Télécom Orange UK (now Orange S.A.). The name Everything Everywhere was announced on 11 May 2010.

 

Rebranding

September 2, 2013. The company changes the legal name of the business to EE Limited.

EE began removing the Orange and T-Mobile branded products from their website and retail stores with all new connections and upgrades available only on EE branded services. These changes were completed in March 2015.

 

Operations

4G network

An announced from EE on September 11, 2018 told of plans to upgrade its 4G network, to provide better speeds and reliability. These upgraded sites will allow for all five ‘carriers’ of 4G, which is more than any other UK operator. The latest smartphones can support connections to all five at the same time with Five Carrier Aggregation and lays the groundwork for its 5G network that the company plans to launch in 2019.

 

Mobile payments

Back in January 2011, EE (then Everything Everywhere) and Barclaycard announced the joint introduction of the United Kingdom’s first contactless mobile payment system for its customers by summer 2011.

EE exclusively partnered with mobile payments company iZettle, announcing the agreement on November 6, 2012. EE received the company’s permission to sell iZettle mini debit/credit card readers, which allows owners of small businesses to take customer payments using their mobile phones.

 

Smart number technology

EE was the first UK mobile network to launch smart number technology beginning in June 11, 2018. This service allows customers to use the same number on any of their devices, including smartphones, tablets, smartwatches and laptops.

This technology is being made available at no extra cost to new and existing customers. It is only available on Apple devices at this time, with Android devices coming at a later date.

Calls and texts will work on multiple devices even when the customer doesn’t have a smartphone with them. Customers can make calls on more than one device at a time, and may be handed off between devices.

 

Retail stores

UK based Phones 4u organization collapsed. In a September 22, 2014 announcement, EE will acquire 58 of its stores for £2.5 million in a deal with its administrators, PricewaterhouseCoopers.

EE announced on July 13, 2017, that they had negotiated a partnership with Sainsbury’s to expand its retail presence with an additional 100 stores as a store within a Sainsbury’s supermarket by the end of 2019.

The company plans to launch additional store formats. Stores branded as EE Showcase will have Help Hubs that are dedicated to customer service, and areas to try out new technological devices. Portable and quick set-up shops will appear in shopping centers and at events throughout the UK. Mobil EE stores set within trucks or vans will reach customers, even in the remotest areas of the country.

 

Marketing

Following the launch of 4G services on November 3, 2012, EE launched its new brand in its first television advertisement. These spots featured American actor Kevin Bacon and his ‘Related Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’ marketing concept. This ad was aired on Saturday evenings on the UK’s television show The X-Factor on the ITV Network.

 

Sponsorships

Beginning in 2013, EE took over the sponsorship of the British Academy of Film and Television Awards in place of the Orange brand.

A Wembley Stadium sponsorship agreement was reached in February 2014. This is a six-year arrangement with The Football Association, but is not being classified as a naming rights agreement.

EE provided reusable battery chargers named ‘Power Bars’ for use by mobile phone users at the Glastonbury Festival 2015. These devices could be exchanged for a fully re-charged device at one of two locations at the festival.

 

Controversies

A number of T-Mobile UK customers complained to the CISAS (Communications and Internet Service Adjudication Scheme) about the conduct of the company in April 2013. T-Mobile UK became embroiled in this controversy when it applied an above Retail Price Index increase to several mobile contract customers, and yet refused to allow a termination option as spelled out by the terms of the contract.

EE started a new service in August 2014 where customers could pay 50p to move to the front of the line when calling customer service. Consumers were outraged and viewed this option as extortion when they should receive prompt service as a standard practice.

EE was awarded the dubious designation as the most complained about phone and broadband provider in the UK in May 2015. Complaints made against the company were reported to the country’s communications regulatory agency, Ofcom (The Office of Communications), relating to topics such as line failures, service issues, and billing problems.

Ofcom fined EE £2.7 million in January 2017 for overcharging customers. EE charged 7,600 consumers for calls made until January 2016 to EE phone numbers from within the European Union in spite of the services becoming free after November 18, 2015. This fine included an amount as punishment for customers for calling customer service numbers and being charged for calling from the United States, even though they were actually calling from the EU.

The Citizen’s Advice Bureau went on a mystery shopping exercise in October 2017. This excursion found that EE, Vodafone and Three UK were not reducing their customers’ bills after the conclusion of fixed deals. This meant that they paid an extra £22 per month on average.