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Vodafone Finally Meets UK 3G Mobile Broadband Coverage Requirement

Friday, January 31st, 2014 (9:44 am) - Score 763

It took a few months but mobile operator Vodafone has finally passed Ofcom’s coverage obligation for 3G based Mobile Broadband coverage, which requires all of the markets major MNOs to provide related network coverage in the 2100MHz band to at least 90% of the UK population.

Readers might recall that Vodafone last year fell short of the above requirement, which had already been achieved by Three UK, O2 and EE, by just 1.4% (here). The obligation also mandates that mobile operators must deliver a “90% probability that users in outdoor locations within that [90% coverage] area can receive the service with a sustained downlink speed of not less than 768kbps in a lightly loaded cell“.

The good news is that Vodafone has spent the past few months working to upgrade 129 mobile transmitter sites, which was completed on time and thus Ofcom sees no reason to “take any further action on this occasion“. Separately Ofcom also has a similar coverage obligation on the licence acquired by O2, which requires them to extend indoor 4G coverage to 98% of the UK population by 2017 at the latest (or more than 99% of the UK population when outdoors) and this looks likely to be achieved with time to spare.

The communications regulator is now carrying out research into the quality of mobile reception, coverage and performance, which should surface during Spring 2014.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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