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    Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker

    This is a discussion on Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker within the General chat forums, part of the Community channel category; Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker - ISPreview UK The national telecoms regulator has today launched ...

    1. #1
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      Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker

      Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker - ISPreview UK
      The national telecoms regulator has today launched a new tool that aims to give consumers a better idea about the performance and coverage of local mobile (2G, 3G and 4G) and fixed line broadband services. But it only uses data from the “major communications providers” and is very basic.

      According to Ofcom, the major mobile network providers (EE, Three UK, O2 and Vodafone) and fixed line ISPs (i.e. BTOpenreach’s and Virgin Media’s national networks) have provided them with key coverage, availability and performance (estimated service speeds) data and this has allowed the them to produce a very rough Mobile and Broadband Coverage Checker.

      The checker itself is incredibly basic and only allows consumers to test their area by postcode, which as we know can lead to some very unreliable results (testing with location specific phone numbers or a full address is usually the better course).

      Furthermore the checker also fails to display details about the available connection types for fixed line services and instead lists estimated speeds under the ambiguous headings of “standard broadband” or “superfast broadband“, which makes it difficult to know which operators or technologies provide the service.

      Sharon White, Ofcom’s CEO, said:

      This interactive map is part of our work to arm people and businesses with high-quality, accessible information, helping them make informed decisions about their communications services.”
      The regulator claims that data like this has not been “readily accessible to consumers and businesses before,” which is not entirely true as a number of sites provide availability checkers for multiple network operators and indeed individual ISPs also offer their own checkers. However Ofcom clarified to ISPreview.co.uk that their checker shows the actual average line speeds of the connections that “real consumers” have purchased in each postcode; so they are not dependent on the estimate that ISPs give at point of sale. Some other sites publish actual speeds based on speed tests run by consumers, but these are limited by how many people have chosen to run the tests and Ofcom’s data is based on information supplied by ISPs.

      Likewise this only covers the bigger ISPs, which means that coverage from Gigaclear, B4RN or Hyperoptic’s FTTH/P networks (three examples of many) hasn’t been considered and that’s a big oversight. Similarly you won’t find fixed wireless providers being mentioned or any of the other altnets dotted around the UK.

      In addition, the coverage of mobile networks should always be taken with a big pinch of salt as real-world network availability is very tricky to pin down and can be affected by all sorts of environmental and other factors, such as new buildings being constructed.
      Mobile coverage and fixed broadband checker | Ofcom
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      Re: Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker

      What does it mean by voice calls?

      Everywhere shows full coverage for us on vodafone, o2 and EE, which is correct for us in the South.
      Except three which shows look fair for 3g and very bad for 4g for quite a widespread area near me. Glad I do not use that network.

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      Re: Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker

      I think 3G and 4G refer to (nowadays faster) data services and, in some places where there is no 3G or 4G coverage, voice calls are still carried separately over what used to be called 2G services (which also carried older slower data services in the past). So if you lived somewhere with no 3G & 4G coverage, you might still be able to make voice calls and I suppose it's to indicate whether or not that's possible in that scenario.
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      Re: Ofcom Launch Basic UK Mobile and Fixed Broadband Coverage Checker

      This is true, or at least it used to be. Now pretty much everywhere gets 3G coverage.

     

     

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