BT’s Allera urges industry to back rural coverage pledge

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BT CEO has called for a cross-industry Rural Coverage Pledge

Operators and UK authorities have been urged to back a pledge to better connect rural areas that receive poor mobile signal by BT consumer CEO Marc Allera.

Allera issued the call in a letter published in The Daily Telegraph, in which he said a different strategy was required to achieve better connectivity in rural areas as he proposed a new cross-industry Rural Coverage Pledge.

The pledge is aimed at gaining the support of the government to help unlock funding, overcome planning challenges and improve access to masts, as well as deliver a unified approach to coverage ‘not spots’.

A commitment is required by the government says Allera, as additional funding would be needed to improve network access.

SIGNAL ISSUE

Allera also cited the issue of some areas in the UK only receiving signals from one or two rather than all four operators, and has called for a solution to open all masts for all four to use “on fair and appropriate terms”.

“I’m confident that if we can get the government and the rest of the industry to agree to this pledge, we can deliver on the ambition to provide everyone in the country with the good mobile coverage they need,” said Allera.

In a further statement, a BT spokesperson said: “BT has already invested heavily to create the widest 4G coverage in the UK, and we are keen to collaborate with government and industry to extend rural coverage into areas where there is none today.

“We’re proposing a cross- industry Rural Coverage Pledge to deliver a unified approach to fixing not spots and addressing those areas with partial coverage in a fair and equitable way.”

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