2G handsets recommended over 3G/4G smartphones in rural UK

By Posted 13 Aug 2011, 16:38

Ever struggled to get signal in the countryside even though you own a top of the range smartphone which includes 3G or even 4G? Well do not fret as it seems you are not the only one. In fact OfCom, or Office of Communications, a regulatory authority in communications, has come up with an intriguing concept that is; for the best reception they recommended 2G handsets over the newer 3G or 4G smartphones if you live in rural parts of the UK.

The reason for this, they argue is that the 2G handsets have access to much more widespread coverage, increasing the chance of connectivity in remote areas of the UK. The company therefore suggests that if quality of calls is a priority for a user, rather than invest in the higher end smartphones, they should consider a 2G handset.

According to ITProPortal, OfCom reports that 3G has much lower coverage on the roads than 2G for the moment, and 4G is still non-existent in the UK all together, let alone the countryside. They go on to say that while Android based devices and iPhones provide excellent high speed access to technologies such as the internet, they fail to provide arguably the main tasks they are for and they are receiving and making calls, when in these areas.

In a recent study which the company performed, they found that state of the art smartphones only had a 95% success rate in regards to the test calling compared to the 97% success of the older generations of handsets. Do you live in a rural part of the UK? If so have you encountered problems connecting calls with your smartphone?

Would you consider investing in a 2G phone for rural areas or is call connectivity something you rarely consider when buying a new smartphone?

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  • Andy Pellegrino

    OFCOM a communications company…..are you serious, they are regulators!

  • Andy Pellegrino

    OFCOM a communications company…..are you serious, they are regulators!

  • Nick

    Disable 3g on iphone is always an option, however i live in belfast and seem to be in a half mile black spot for coverage 2g/3G. Only having this problem since iphone4 came out. Coincidence….? The funny thing is when i call o2 to complain about the continous dropouts they say all ok! No o2, resetting the phone will not fix your rubbish network on a flawed handset design.

    • http://mediamonstrosity.com Media Monstrosity

      The point is though that 2G phones leave more space for a larger antenna, which’ll mean effectively that more signal is getting to the phone.

  • http://mediamonstrosity.com Media Monstrosity

    To me it doesn’t seem like too much of a surprise. All modern phones are trying to cram as much as possible into the cases, and everybody wants them to be small, so something has to give. If the iPhone was about a quarter of a cm thicker and they put a bigger antenna in then maybe they’d get better signal, but I don’t really want it. In general also I’d say smartphones are bought a lot more in cities, because people in the country know that they won’t be able to use it fully a lot of the time, so I’d guess not much will change.

  • Billy Bob

    Why stop there? I remember before everything went digital. I had a 3 watt Motorola bag phone (on Verizon) with a digital rate plan. I simply signed up for the new digital phone and called them a few days later and claimed I had “misplaced” my new phone. I then switched ESN numbers back to the bag phone and never called them back. With the magnetic antenna on the roof of my pick-up I had 5 bars when fellow drivers had no signal. I knew this because many of my CB truck driver buddies claimed I was lying when I told them I was talking on my cell phone. 

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