Skip to main content

UK Mobile Data Is Cheap, But Useless Without A Signal

One of the things that struck me about travelling in the UK was how cheap data is now. I picked up a Three SIM card after arriving at Manchester Airport and signed up for the 12GB monthly prepaid plan.

For the three weeks I was in the UK this was going to more than serve my needs. And all for £20.

Except that it didn't because I found the quality of the signal across large parts of the North of England and Scotland to be non-existent in places. Without a signal its hard to actually chew through all of the fabulously cheap data.

By comparison NZ data is expensive and in a country with just a few major cities and large, dispersed rural populations it's no surprise to find areas with no signal. Yet NZ's networks seem to have done a much better job of filling the holes than their UK counterparts. Certainly I've never failed to get a signal in places where I'd expect to find one.

The same is emphatically not true of the UK. I'm not sure whether that's just a weakness of the Three network or also true for other UK networks, but it seems a pretty disappointing state of affairs. I even suspected my iPhone SE of being at fault - yet a switch to another phone gave no improvement.

If I were to return to the UK I'd certainly be looking at someone else to provide my mobile coverage, because ultimately the low price doesn't wash away the bitter taste of poor service.


Popular posts from this blog

F1: Robert Kubica Impresses In Renault Test Run

The car may be old but its the performance of the driver that's the story here. Robert Kubica returned to F1, after a fashion, earlier this week with an extensive test run in a 2012 Lotus Renault F1 car at Valencia.
The age of the car and the circuit were likely determined by F1's current rules which ban testing, but the reason for Kubica being in the car is far more interesting. Considered by many to be a potential World Champion and certainly one of the fastest drivers of his generation, Kubica's F1 career seemed to be over after a 2011 crash whilst driving in the Rally of Andora. His Skoda Fabia was penetrated by a guardrail in the high speed accident partially severing his right arm.
Up until last year Kubica has been competing in rallying, with the expectation that the limited movement in his repaired arm would prohibit a return to single seater racing.
So this week's test is both interesting and confusing. Interesting because Kubica completed 115 laps of the ret…

Panos Panay's Defence Of Microsoft Surface Hardware Sounds Eerily Familiar

This weekend I went out with my ten year old daughter to select a laptop for her school year beginning in January. The schools requirements are quite specific, requiring a Windows 10 device, with a preference for a touchscreen and a stylus. She chose a Surface Pro, after trying a large number of different options. Having seen the way I use my own Surface Pro - and tried it herself there was only ever going to be two options - and the other was a Surface Laptop.
I tell you this so that you understand I am a buyer of Microsoft's products through choice, not compulsion. I'm on my third Surface device now. 
So when Panos Panay dismissed reports of the death of the Surface hardware line, I was very interested to see exactly how strong these denials were. Especially how they reflect what has gone before. To whit: Windows 10 Mobile.
Panay claimed that Microsoft is in hardware for the long haul. Almost exactly mirroring the words of Terry Myerson, when he claimed Windows Mobile was g…

WhartonBrooks Indiegogo Windows 10 Mobile Even More Doomed To Failure Than Usual

WhartonBrooks is currently crowd-funding its latest Windows Mobile smartphone on Indiegogo. If crowdfunding isn't already a bad enough idea, a company trying to crowdfund a Windows Mobile device should be warning enough for you.
Not that anyone seems to be taking the project too seriously. With a few weeks left to run the campaign has managed to ensnare just 2% of its $1.1m target.
If you want a better indication of how few Window Mobile loyalists remain I doubt there is one. Of 3,900 Windows Phone enthusiasts Wharton Brooks was seeking for its new phone, it has managed to entice just 50.
Windows for Phones is dead, even if the corpse hasn't stopped twitching yet.