One in three get no signal or a rubbish reception at home

One in three get no signal or a rubbish reception at home

For me it’s not too surprising. While networks concentrate on pushing out 4G networks, they do so from existing masts, so the actual coverage doesn’t really change a great deal.


Sure, you could argue that the different frequencies used by some networks for their 4G signals has improved coverage a bit (O2, Voda and Three all have 800MHz signals in some areas), but it could still be better. Just a few weeks ago I got a little wound up after losing all signal just a few metres outside a network store. Major towns have no signal in certain areas, and if you live in certain housing estates, you simply can’t get a phone signal in your own home.

One in three get no signal or a rubbish reception at home

If you live in the sprawling Darwin Park (above), which is not far from me, you have no 2G, 3G or 4G coverage when you go in your house on Vodafone…

One in three get no signal or a rubbish reception at home

Now, after a survey of more than 2,000 people by uSwitch.com, it’s become apparent that the problem is quite widespread. They found that 62% of mobile users have patchy call quality and half experience calls cutting out while indoors. Strangely, although it’s our capital city and undoubtedly has the best coverage, Londoners suffer the worst indoor mobile reception – 42% reporting poor or no coverage at home.

One in three get no signal or a rubbish reception at home

As a get-around, most are resorting to their landlines (39%), whilst 30% go outside and 27% head to Sjype, Whatsapp or Facetime over WiFi.

Strangely, when switching, it seems that people just aren’t doing their research – 64% didn’t check the coverage map before signing up and, unbelievably, 18% were unaware this is possible.

The figures also show that not much is changing to improve coverage – 57% of respondents state that the poor coverage has always been that way, with 19% saying that the problem only started when they switched network.

Ernest Doku, telecoms expert at uSwitch.com, says..

Decent mobile signal at home isn’t a nice-to-have, it’s absolutely essential for the growing numbers who choose not to have landline phones and rely on mobiles to avoid isolation, or vulnerability in emergencies.

In a bid to avoid the plague of poor signal, mobile users should check coverage maps, which you can find online, for where they live, work and socialise before joining a network. And, if you find call reception gets worse over time, double check it’s not your handset or a faulty SIM card that’s the problem before you look to change networks.

It’s worth letting your provider know right away if you’re experiencing issues as it might be something that can be fixed with a signal booster. Failing that, you might want to look at switching networks but do keep a log of any call reception issues, and note the dates you contact your network to report them, so you can build a watertight case to switching away mid-contract if needs be.

Signal-boosters are something that a lot of our readers will be familiar with, and many networks offer apps and WiFi-calling functionality as a way around these in-home issues, but I’m still doubtful that coverage will ever improve quickly enough to satisfy our ever-increasing demand for blanket mobile connectivity. The planning legislation and cost tends to hold things back.

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