Vodafone announced last week that it had rolled out “reliable 4G” to more than 50 locations across the four nations of the UK
The announcement, is a welcome step to reducing coverage black spots, and is the latest rollout within the UK’s Shared Rural Network (SRN) programme, which was launched three years ago by the UK government and mobile operators with the aim of increasing coverage for hard-to-reach areas, including bringing 95% 4G coverage across the UK by 2025.
Ofcom’s Connected Nations report, published at the end of last year, has revealed that progress towards this goal is being made, albeit at a moderate pace. UK mobile operators have deployed more than 150 new sites under the SRN programme, not including sites that were already planned when the SRN was announced or those built primarily to support the emergency services, while more sites have been upgraded. As Ofcom noted however, this growth has produced a small increase in the areas where all MNOs provide coverage, with good mobile coverage now available across 92.2%, up from 91.9% in 2021.
While this is moderate progress, it is still a good step to reducing coverage black spots, and the percentage of coverage will likely to continue creeping up over the next year or so.
Rural connectivity and the provision of a truly Gigabit Britain are big topics at this year’s Connected North which is being held in Manchester on April 17 & 18. Make sure you pick up your tickets by following the link!