Your new countryside phone is your old mobile
Want to get ahead in the countryside? Scrap the smartphone and dig the brick-like Nokia out of your kitchen drawer. Yes, you'll only have Snake for company, but on the upside you might actually be able to make a telephone call.
So says Ofcom, who have completed a study that indicates it's easier to start and completing made in rural areas on older 2G phones. The regulator found that “in the more rural areas that the phones were tested, the feature/entry-level phones generally returned somewhat better performance than smartphones for call completion and call setup.” The reason is likely to be that bulkier 2G phones allowed more internal space for aerials, and because there's no need for the handset to switch between 2G/3G during calls.
It's no surprise whatsoever. Very little has been spent improving coverage outside urban areas in recent years. The "countryside" (to lump all places outside towns and cities together) therefore has the phone it deserves - nobody has bothered ploughing money into ensuring there's blanket coverage, so smartphones are bound to struggle everywhere where there's not a high headcount - and a high return on investment. Ofcom's report indicates more is being spent on improving network infrastructure in the sticks, but it's never going to match urban coverage.