Vodafone service expansion this summer
On Monday Vodafone announced that it will start a multi-million pound investment to expand its high speed mobile broadband network using HSUPA technology (High Speed Uplink Packet Access) across six UK towns and cities; Birmingham, Bristol, Glasgow, Liverpool, Manchester and Reading. The planned expansion will extend coverage by up to 3 million users and should be completed by the autumn of 2008. The major British airports and London were the first sites to benefit from the high speed upgrade in 2007.
Vodafone claims that since pioneering Mobile Broadband in June 2006, they have led the way in keeping things simple and through innovation and customer insight have introduced the following key elements; the award winning USB modem, plug and play software, flat rate domestic tariffs and 'per day' roaming sessions with Mobile Connect Abroad.
Nick Read, CEO of Vodafone UK said "The recent acceleration in the take up of mobile broadband has demonstrated just how hungry consumers are for internet access wherever they are. As a result we are significantly investing in our network so that more customers can experience our award winning, fast and reliable mobile broadband network".
Vodafone also announced in their press release about the expansion, that they will "start to do even more" to simplify the way they sell mobile broadband services. This may be seen as a reaction to the on-going general criticism in the UK of mobile operators and in particular mobile service retailers for over charging and sharp practice. A recent programme in the Channel 4 series 'Dispatches' reported that it is apparently a widespread practice among mobile retailers, despite their claims of impartiality, of selling inappropriate calling plans to their customers in order to boost commissions and meet quotas set by the 'phone companies.
In April of this year Vodafone UK signed a five year deal with BT. An agreement that will see BT deploy its new 21st Century Network-enabled Ethernet service giving Vodafone the capability to deliver the highest performing mobile broadband service. The deal is expected to enable Vodafone UK to manage the predicted growth in traffic and bandwidth requirements without the need for further investment.