Advice Note - mobile coverage

In July 2011, the Communications Consumer Panel sent an Advice Note to Ofcom on the subject of mobile coverage (PDF 113KB, opens in a new window).

We send a formal Advice Note less than once a year, and so this course of action by the Panel conveys the level of our concern that, without intervention, mobile coverage will continue to be poor or non-existent in many areas, creating significant problems for small businesses and people living in not-spots, the people passing through them and passengers on the rail network. In September 2011, in response to the Advice Note (PDF 1.31MB, opens in a new window), Ofcom Chairman, Colette Bowe acknowledges the issue and points out the practical and political steps that have to be overcome to improve coverage.

This week's statement from Chancellor George Osborne (3rd October 2011) pledging to inject up to £150m of new funding into extending mobile coverage is a clear indication that the Government recognises the extent of the problem and is prepared to do something about it. We are pleased by this response from the Government but wait to see the detail of how the recently announced intervention will work, and how many extra people and communities will receive coverage as a result.

Depending on the extent of this first intervention, it may still be necessary to use some of the money raised by the 4G spectrum auction in order to raise mobile coverage in the UK to a level that satisfies the reasonable aspirations of citizens and communities.

We will continue to monitor this issue and campaign if we think that more intervention is required.

Communications Consumer Panel Advice Note (PDF 113KB, opens in a new window) and Annex 1 (PDF 83KB, opens in a new window).

Ofcom's response to the Advice Note (PDF 1.31MB, opens in a new window).

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