Home Tech Tube Phone: Mayor Boris announces system-wide network

Tube Phone: Mayor Boris announces system-wide network


JohnsonNow we've nailed the phantom "Free Public WiFi" network on London's deepest Underground lines (see my earlier post), I'm gratified to hear that London Mayor Boris Johnson has personally intervened to ensure that the Tube network will have mobile phone signals in time for the 2012 Olympics. 

Following his initiative the cost of the scheme, said to be hundreds of millions, will be covered by the five main cellular phone networks – Vodafone, O2, Orange, T-Mobile and 3. It is believed that the Mayor will announce that nearly all the city's Tube network will have mobile phone reception in time for the event. 

According to reports, the system will incorporate long transmitter cables along the top of Tube tunnels with receiving antennas at the ends of all carriages. This is all very good news for London travellers, never mind Olympic visitors, since not only telephone calls but data reception will become possible.


  1. Hmmmmm… Whilst I don’t live in London, I am not sure I like this idea any more than the idea of allowing people to use their mobile phones on planes.It is pleasant to find a place where one is not surrounded by people bellowing into their mobiles…. Don’t they realise it is a “phone” not a megaphone? They do not need to shout into the damn thing. But they do, and I hate it with a passion. Also those irritating, so called “funny” ring tones that people use ( I confess mine is in that class, a child yelling in mandarin, saying Please do not answer this phone).

    Why do people need to use their phones in the tube… can they not be without it for the relatively short time they are in it?

    grumble, grumble Hurumphhhhhh.

  2. Don’t forget that a large part of the London Underground network is actually above ground, so passengers already have the chance to make calls much of the time. There’s usually so much going on, so much noise anyway, that I’m hardly aware of phone calls and they are rarely an intrusion. Boom boom boom from MP3 player earphones is a greater hazard! However, the ability to continue using data connections while spending an hour burrowing under London will definitely be welcome. I’ll put up with the phone calls.

  3. Ah, OK, an above ground under ground system….. I had forgotten the bits that service the outer reaches of London…. The places where no one would wish to go to…. Barnet et.al.

    I do agree with you about the MP3 players though…. I also hate that muffled bass line that intrudes so. Must be awful for their ears too.


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