The Mayor of London has published a standard agreement for landlords, public property owners, and mobile operators that will make it easier to deploy mobile infrastructure on rooftops and on buildings to allow for fuller 5G coverage.
Mobile operators have long complained about an inconsistent approach, arguing they need access to properties to improve their networks. This is not only important for 4G networks but also 5G.
Operators will need to densify their networks using micro-infrastructure such as small cells and high capacity spectrum in order to fulfill the speed, capacity and low-latency promises of 5G.
London 5G access
“Today good mobile coverage is an expectation for all those who live, work or visit London. This guidance is part of the Mayor’s commitment to enhance mobile and fixed connectivity in the capital,” said Theo Blackwall, London Chief Digital Officer. “It helps end uncertainty which has stopped or slowed infrastructure being put in place across London with a new, consistent approach.”
Businesses in the city have also been frustrated by the persistence of mobile “notspots”.
City Hall says the agreement delivers on a manifesto pledge from Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, to better use public sector property to improve mobile coverage in the city – benefiting both residents and businesses.
According to Ofcom Londoners currently consume a fifth of all data consumed in the UK and City Hall believes volumes will increase by up to 42 per cent every year.
The agreement has been welcomed by the industry as a positive step forward.
“Mobile UK welcomes these standard template agreements, which result from partnership between landowners, operators and other stakeholders, all of whom recognise the vital importance of mobile connectivity to the future prosperity of London and the UK more generally,” said Hamish MacLeod, Director at Mobile UK.
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Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.