back to article The Register Monopoly Pubcrawl Mobile Map: VODAFONE WINS VOICE

Check out the Register's interactive mobile coverage Monopoly map (voice only for now) right here. While all the sexy stuff these days in mobile phones is web, apps and tweeting, voice calls are still the major thing people use mobile phones for. The Register and mobile network survey experts GWS took to the London streets to …

VMNOs

Am curious as to whether the results for these networks can be applied to the virtual mobile networks that use the networks. For example does GiffGaff or Tesco Mobile that use O2 share O2's call reliability/quality or is that dependent on the actual operator's equipment more/too/instead?

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Re: VMNOs

It should be identical in terms of everything within O2's network with the exception of the specific virtual links allocated to the MVNO in question and any interaction between the MVNO's billing system and the O2 HLR that holds the account details/credit status.

Short answer, very little difference, but I can say that in giffgaff's case their data links are pretty congested and they're in the process of making changes to tariffs etc to try and fix this.

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Anonymous Coward

I call shenanigans.....

This in no way reflects my experience. Wherever I go in the country, never mind London, Vodafone coverage is pants for both data and voice. I usually carry a work phone (Vodafone) and a personal one (O2 via Tesco Mobile) and often have to use my personal one for work business due to Vodafone's total lack of decent coverage. Sure, it says you have a signal, but it doesn't work!

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Re: I call shenanigans.....

Agreed, I have Vodaphone for business and EE for personal. There was a recent nationwide coverage survey which found EE at the top and Vodaphone at the bottom, this is definitely reflected in my personal experience. Vodaphone coverage is terrible nationwide. Perhaps they spent all their money on central London because they are shortsighted and narrow minded. I have also heard that Vodaphone have the least ambitious 4G roll out plans of all of the networks; my general impression is that they are all sh*t and no shovel.

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"Naturally Three uses 3G 100 per cent of the time, having no 2G to fall back to. "

Three falls back to "Tmobile" on 2G, would this not be counted due to effectively roaming onto a different network?

In the real-world, however, this would offer users a signal in non-Three areas.

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Silver badge

Are you sure?

Three falls back to "Tmobile" on 2G ...

Three certainly used to use 2G fallback on another network -- I believe it was Orange, not T-Mob -- but I'm led to understand that Three are now sufficiently confident of their own network coverage that there is no longer significant (if any) use made of this facility.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Are you sure?

My three phone switches back to 2G at times when there is no three signal.

The 3 in touch app is brilliant though surprised they haven't talked more about it.

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Pint

Effen Brilliant !!

This is why I love this site and why El Reg is simply the best... Have a pint and a great weekend

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Silver badge

I do hope Simon isn't double parked in that picture.

That's like a forfeit or something!

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With so many variables how do you get a definitive answer.

How much does handset choice influence these real life experiences and alter the perception compared to the underlying network capabilities.

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Gold badge

Could it be the codec?

Is it possible Vodafone uses a different codec? For instance, AT&T sounded **HIDEOUS** for years here in the US in most markets. They were using AMR-FR (full rate) in just a few markets, and AMR-HR (half rate) *all the time* in most markets. T-Mo at that point was usually running AMR-FR (full rate) with half rate used only if the site was busy, and then only if your signal strength was good enough (i.e closer to the site -- since half rate has poorer error correction, calls would go back up to full rate further from the site.) AT&T apparently got over this more recently. T-Mobile now advertises "HD" calls, running I think 14kbps codec (which is a little higher than the usual AMR-FR.)

I won't compare with Sprint and Verizon, the CDMA codecs are quite different, and there is no defined "half" and "full" rate on this setup. It's still possible to tank call quality by setting average call bit rate too low though.

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