back to article Vodafone, Orange to share UK mast sites

UK mobile operators Vodafone and Orange have announced a plan to share mast sites while continuing to compete with each other. The two telcos said today that joint sites would begin operating later this year. "This deal will see our two companies work together to ensure our customers benefit from better, deeper and faster …

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  1. Duncan Hothersall
    Heart

    Is it last year already?

    They appear to have announced this at least twice so far; this one must be the charm.

  2. Dawid Lorenz

    Deja vu?

    Hang on, I think they've already announced that quite a while ago (like a year or so).. Moreover, the closest to my house Orange base station has been removed shortly after, so I've figured that could be an effect of that agreement, as there are three other Vodafone stations pretty close. But today they are announcing the same thing again.. I don't understand sth here. Deja vu? :-o

  3. Andrew Barratt
    Happy

    Ooops, Orange full service, Vodafone no coverage

    "Engineer Error" blamed for complete loss of service in <insert recently marketed area here> ..

    Just imagine....

  4. Fluffykins

    And about time too.

    Why don't ALL the mobile companied sell off the masts, all of them, to an outfit like Crown House, wot runs part of the TV transmission infrastructure (and the other one - can't remember what it's called), so the masts get consolidated and you don't have the silly state of multiple masts in or near one particular location.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Deja vu?

    Sure I read about this somewhere before...

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/02/08/orange_vodafone_network/

    Oh yes, on the Register a year ago! Continuation of the same story?

  6. Chad H.
    Happy

    no its different to last time

    last time they were sharing their networks, this time they're only sharing the plot of land. Each company has its own equipment at each site.

  7. vodaworker

    ...And so the saga continues

    It's very disappointing that this is still dragging on, this long awaited announcement is actually business as usual. Many sites are already shared between 2 or more operators. The Vodafone Trade Union have some reaction:-

    http://www.connectinvodafone.blogspot.com/

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    What about O2 providing a better service too.......

    Where I live in Shropshire, the only mobile operator with a reliable signal is Orange.

    Im sure in the City all the 4 major mobile operators

    (Orange, Vodafone, O2, T-Mobile) get full signal, but what about rural areas?

    It seems that from my experience Orange have more masts in rural areas compared to other networks.

    ......Ok, O2 can advertise there deals on TV but whats the point if I can't use it.

  9. Dafydd Lawrence

    It's been going on for a long time

    This may be a more formal announcement that all masts will be shared by these two companies but very often a new mast will be erected and paid for by one company who pay the lease to the land owner and then another operator will sub lease space on that mast. Thsi could be between any of the carriers.

    However it does depend on the size of the mast initially erected and also whether the mast is in the right location for the other operator, but generally if there is a mast in a good location then usually another mobile operator is not going to build another mast right next to it.

  10. jon

    And the difference to us will be...?

    Will they be sharing sites in areas where one of the networks is currently weak e.g. Shropshire (Anonymous Coward) and allow the non-performing network access? If so, great for us but if they are really determined to stay in competition it makes no sense for the dominant network. Removing masts where they "double-up" is obvious but will make no difference to the user.

  11. Dr Patrick J R Harkin
    Flame

    This shouldn't be necessary...

    Why HMG sold the airwaves, they should have made cooperative sharing of infrastructure a requirement. I can choose to buy the gas which runs my boiler from British Gas, NPower, Yorkshire Electricity and for all I know Microsoft, Richard Branson or Enron but it comes through the same pipes.

    Fire icon not cos I'm particularly annoyed, just that it reminds of the boiler which keeps my toes toasty warm.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Orange / Vodafone

    The mobile companies have been sharing sites for years though Orange has usually been the odd one out who would quite often put up a new tower alongside an existing one.

    The big question is are they going to take any towers down? I suspect they will just make room for other services to use the towers.

    Who is "Crown House"? BBC sites were sold to Castle Transmission which became Crown Castle but that was sold to National Grid several years ago and is probably going to be sold to Arquiva,

  13. Mark Roberjot
    Paris Hilton

    Shropshire

    Living in the middle of Shropshire, I have used all the networks over the last 5-6 years, finally ending up with Voda. I can confidently state that the level of reception in our beautiful county is as follows, T-Mobile, O2, Orange, Voda with T-mobile being unusable and Voda working very well.

    I would add that O2 seems to be stronger in the north of the county, and orange is strongest in the middle, but overall Voda wins out, particularly in the respect of actually being able to make calls with low levels of reception and /or indoors, something that orange and especially T-Mobile are not good at, (Something to do with signal wavelength I believe). T-Mobile is of course completely useless anyway, even when it appears to have full reception it still doesn't actually ring.

    \Rant.

    After 2/3rds of a contract I actually bought out 30 handsets with T-Mobile, because I had repeated complaints from customers that our staff were call screening and never answered the 'phone. In fact the phones don't ring, you just get a voicemail and missed call message, even when in a good reception zone.

    /Endrant.

    Common sense warning - you get what you pay for, Voda is the most expensive network (but not by as much as you think) - it is also the best network.

    btw if you didn't know 'Orange Customer Services' is an oxymoron of the highest order.

    Paris - now would that be a roaming call?

  14. Heinz
    Alert

    Announce, re-announce, then announce again

    They appear to have adopted the Nu Labour strategy - announce, re-announce and then announce again.

    But don't DO anything!

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  16. Richard

    Re: Oranges for Everyone?

    No, read the article again: "The companies insist, however, that the deal is not a merger nor an amalgamation of networks."

    They'll just be sharing the steel towers. Both will have their own separate pieces of kit and backhaul from each site.

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