'National roaming' plans could end Britain's rural signal blues

'National roaming' plans could end Britain's rural signal blues
New plans could force networks to share

UK network blackspots in rural areas could be eradicated under new plans to make mobile networks share their signals with rival operators

Culture Secretary Sajid Javid wants to introduce a 'national roaming' scheme where mobile customers can piggy back onto other networks in order to boost weak or non-existent signals in some areas.

So, for example, if O2 customers are receiving no coverage, the device would instantly hop over to EE or vise versa.

The plans have been met with opposition from the some in the mobile phone industry, who claim it would remove the incentive for networks to boost their own infrastructure and build new towers.


A spokesperson for Three told the BBC it was still intent on widening its own coverage, but did not seem averse to participating in a national roaming scheme.

"We've invested heavily to bring coverage to around 98% of the population," the spokesperson said.

"We support the principle of expanding coverage to address areas less well served and are in discussions with government about the most effective means to deliver that."

Chris Smith

A technology journalist, writer and videographer of many magazines and websites including T3, Gadget Magazine and TechRadar.com. He specializes in applications for smartphones, tablets and handheld devices, with bylines also at The Guardian, WIRED, Trusted Reviews and Wareable. Chris is also the podcast host for The Liverpool Way. As well as tech and football, Chris is a pop-punk fan and enjoys the art of wrasslin'.