Foreign tourists in UK get better cellphone coverage than locals

  • 30/10/2016
Female Cell phone close-up hand outdoor message sms e-mail

Mobile phone reception in Britain is so poor that foreign tourists often get better coverage than locals, according to MPs.

Their investigation condemned the fact UK phone users are usually tied to just one network, whereas tourists' phones automatically switch to the best signal.

Mobile phones are an almost essential part of everyday life. But one of the greatest frustrations is not being able to get a decent signal.

A report by the British Infrastructure Group of backbench MPs says there has been no significant improvement in mobile phone coverage in Britain over the past two years. And it now wants UK mobile users to be able to roam at home, just like tourists whose phones automatically switch to the best signal. But the networks say no.

The mobile phone coverage saga is not new. Some 17 million of UK users have poor reception at home.

In 2014 the networks pledged £5 billion (NZ$8.5 billion) and promised 90 percent coverage by the end of next year. But they look set to miss that target, with more than 500 so called "not-spot" areas with no signal at all.

The mobile phone has come a long way. But this report suggests the UK networks have a bit of catching up to do.

They say they continue to invest billions of pounds  but critics say it's not enough when you can't even get a signal in the first place.

ITV News