Vodafone will switch on its 5G network for both consumers and business customers in seven cities across the UK

The business is also creating digital innovation and incubator centres across the UK.

The tech will be switched on it Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Manchester, Liverpool and London at the start of July, and will be among the first cities in the world to receive 5G.

Birkenhead, Blackpool, Bournemouth, Guildford, Newbury, Portsmouth, Plymouth, Reading, Southampton, Stoke-on-Trent, Warrington and Wolverhampton have been said to follow later this year.

"We started our 5G journey more than three years ago," said Vodafone UK chief executive Nick Jeffrey.

"We led the way in setting 5G standards to ensure phones and networks work well together. We upgraded our masts to be able to take 5G without disruption and we were the first UK company to test 5G over our all-fibre core fixed and mobile network.

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

→ READ MORE: TELECOMS FIRM RAISES £12.7M TO ROLLOUT 5G

It will soon open a digital innovation and incubator centre at MediaCity, Greater Manchester, and has unveiled plans for a new 5G facility at the Ricoh Arena - home of Wasps rugby and netball clubs.

Under the new sponsorship and technology deal with Wasps, Vodafone will equip the rugby stadium and netball centre with 5G and Internet of Things technology.

Vodafone will price 5G the same as 4G for both consumers and business customers and a choice of 5G smartphones will be available to buy online or in Vodafone stores over the summer.

The business will also offer a 5G router for use in the home and office to give customers without a fixed line connection high-speed broadband access.  

Group chief executive Nick Read said: "We are executing our strategy at pace and have achieved our guidance for the year, with good growth in most markets but also increased competition in Spain and Italy and headwinds in South Africa.

"The group is at a key point of transformation - deepening customer engagement, accelerating digital transformation, radically simplifying our operations, generating better returns from our infrastructure assets and continuing to optimise our portfolio.

"To support these goals and to rebuild headroom, the board has made the decision to rebase the dividend, helping us to reduce debt and deliver to the low end of our target range in the next few years."