UK Mobile Broadband Coverage
In making the decision to go mobile, you need to know what the mobile broadband coverage is in the area you live in or travel to. Mobile broadband coverage varies depending on both the provider (ISP) and the location. For good mobile broadband coverage and performance, a good 3G signal reception and availability to the network service is needed.
Finding out how good the mobile broadband coverage is in your area can be as simple as asking friends with a 3G phone how good their service is, as well as looking at the number of reception bars they get on their 3G phone. If you have friends that use more than one local service, you can use their experience as a mobile broadband coverage checker, before making the commitment to any one service contract.
In addition to checking strength of reception in your mobile broadband coverage area, also look at the speed of service. If there are too many people trying to use the service in your local area, you may experience delays, cut-outs of reception, or the service may be too busy to access at certain times of the day. Once again, using friends and acquaintances as a mobile broadband coverage checker is a quick and easy way to go.
The best mobile broadband coverage can be achieved in a strong 3G signal area, even when users on the service are streaming videos or using Skype. A strong signal in your mobile broadband coverage area can provide an internet connection speed and web browsing ease that rivals that of home broadband.
A problem with good mobile broadband coverage can quickly occur however, when you travel out of a 3G service provider area – When this happens the mobile broadband coverage will revert back to the standard mode of GPRS. GPRS provides slow connection speeds, even slower than dial up connections. Mobile broadband coverage with GPRS gives you limited use, and does not actually meet the standards to even be called broadband.
Service providers are working to improve their 3G, and now 3.5G networks, and the mobile broadband coverage area continues to expand across the UK. Mobile broadband coverage areas do vary, however, two companies, like 3 Broadband and 3 Store cover approximately 90% of the UK and provide speeds up to 3.6Mb. Virgin Mobile covers over 85% of the UK population. T-Mobile covers 98% of the UK. Another ISP company, Vodafone, has a network that reaches about 80% of the UK; they offer speeds of up to 7.2Mb, with these speeds limited to the larger cities and metropolitan areas of the UK.
As area networks continue to grow and carriers work on improving their service reception and connection speeds, the areas that provide a good signal quality also become wider and more easily accessible. Mobile broadband coverage areas are expanding at such a fast rate that it is recommended to recheck signal strength in your area for positive changes on a monthly, if not weekly basis. All of the UK’s mobile broadband providers are working on upgrading their networks to 7.2Mb, while Vodafone, which currently does offer 7.2Mb on a limited basis, is working on doubling its network speeds to 14.4Mb.
As a review of how to check for, and what to check, with mobile broadband coverage in a specific area:
- Mobile broadband coverage varies depending on both the provider and the location.
- For good mobile broadband coverage and performance, users need both a good 3G signal reception and availability to the network service or ISP
- Finding out how good the mobile broadband coverage is in your area can be as simple as asking friends with a 3G phone how good their service is.
- Look at the speed of service – How easy is it to access the service. Is the speed of connection slow, or do you get cut-off with increases in service load?
- The best mobile broadband coverage can be achieved in a strong 3G signal area.
- Before signing up with a mobile broadband provider, make sure that you check the mobile broadband coverage in your area first
- Travel out of a 3G service area and mobile broadband coverage will revert back to the standard slow mode of GPRS.
- The 3G and 3.5G mobile broadband coverage area continues to expand across the UK
- Recheck signal strength in area on regular basis for new changes in the mobile broadband coverage network.
- Check to see if the ISP/service provider offers a money back guarantee on sign-up in case you discover the mobile broadband coverage area they offer does not meet your needs.
Mobile broadband coverage of the Internet Service Providers, or ISP’s, can be determined by using each of the company’s mobile broadband coverage checker maps. The mobile broadband coverage checker maps will tell users the strength and type of signal in a specific area, however it will not tell specifics about the load on the network or the speed of the connection. Be aware that the mobile broadband coverage checker may indicate good signal strength and speed for a listed location; however, variations in geography or architecture may produce patchy areas or decreased signal strength in specific areas of coverage.
After checking to see the mobile broadband coverage in a specific area, check with friends to see how the speed is as well as finding out if there are times when it is difficult to access the internet or connect. Compare, ask, and spend a small amount of time to be sure the ISP/service provider you select is the right choice for you and your needs. Once you have done all of this don’t forget to compare mobile broadband prices to find the best deal.