Ofcom to investigate EE and Vodafone over data coverage

The UK's telecoms regulator is currently investigating whether EE and Vodafone provided accurate information regarding their 3G and 4G mobile networks.

In a post on its site, Ofcom revealed that it has launched an investigation after discovering mistakes made by Vodafone which led the telecom to under-estimate its 4G coverage in rural areas.

BT Group's EE is in a similar situation after the regulator found that it had over-estimated its 3G coverage in rural areas.

Ofcom relies on telecoms to provide accurate information about their mobile coverage because it uses this data to develop coverage maps and applications for consumers so that they can make informed decisions on which mobile provider to choose.

The regulator aims to gather evidence against EE and Vodafone until the end of December.

Vodafone and EE's defence

Britain's largest mobile operator, EE said that it had already updated its 3G coverage map following feedback from Ofcom. The telecom emphasised the point that its 2G and 4G networks are far larger overall.

A spokesperson for EE apologised for any discrepancies, saying:

“We apologise for any confusion this may have caused, and we continue to work to give our customers the most accurate view of the coverage available to them.”

Vodafone explained to the Financial Times why its data did not reflect its actual coverage, saying:

“It appears that we may have been inadvertently under-reporting the extent of our 4G network coverage. This is because the data we have been submitting is adjusted to reflect the signal customers actually receive on their mobile phones.”  

Via Reuters

Anthony Spadafora

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.