Vodafone launches programme to improve indoor coverage in rural areas


Community Indoor Sure Signal scheme will provide services to 100 communities in mobile coverage  ‘not-spots’

Vodafone has launched a programme to provide 100 rural community hubs with reliable indoor 3G mobile coverage and internet access.

The Community Indoor Sure Signal (CISS) programme will be open to 100 rural community areas, from pubs to village halls and community-run shops in mobile coverage ‘not-spots’ across the UK.

It uses femtocell technology, similar to that being deployed by Vodafone to connect UK rural communities through its Rural Open Sure Signal (ROSS) programme.

The Sure Signal + unit plugs into a standard fixed broadband router to provide mobile coverage throughout a building.

Coverage will bring both 3G voice and data ensuring both employees and visitors to these areas will be able to make both calls and surf the internet on their mobiles or tablets.

The application process is open until September 1, 2016, with the first selected communities being announced in the autumn.

Successful applicants will need an unlimited broadband package, download speeds of at least 4Mbps, upload speeds of at least 2Mbps and a domestic plug-in power point.

Reliable coverage “vital”

Vodafone UK chief technology officer Jorge Fernandes said: “Reliable mobile coverage and mobile internet are vital to the economic and social well-being of rural communities.

“By installing our units, we can ensure that rural hotspots continue to play an important role in rural community life.”