back to article UK's Emergency Services Network unlikely to start operating until 2029

The price cap Britain's competition regulator imposed on Motorola's Airwave Solutions, whose tech provides comms between emergency services across the nation, could save taxpayers more than £1 billion by the time the successor is ready. According to the Competition Market Authority's (CMA) final report into the inner workings …

  1. Flak


    Not holding my breath about anyone being held accountable for this one.

    1. Furious Reg reader John

      Re: Scandalous!

      Yet more civil service incompetence. Knighthoods and other gongs will be the punishments issued to those who are accountable.

      1. msknight

        Re: Scandalous!

        Otherwise known as being promoted out of harms way.

        1. Snapper

          Re: Scandalous!

          Or the Civil Service unofficial mantra of 'Shit should rise to the top'.

      2. steviebuk Silver badge

        Re: Scandalous!

        It really pisses me off but I'm interested to know how it happens. How people high up get away with shit like this and some get promoted. Look at Dido Harding. Always see it in Private Eye and I just don't understand how they all get away with it. A director at a place I was at got given money to go away quietly. Mentions in Private Eye of council Chief Exec being suspended then eventually paid off to leave. How?

        1. VoiceOfTruth Silver badge

          Re: Scandalous!

          They are the rulers, people like you and me are the serfs. Crap runs downhill only. What you fail to understand is the very idea that holding the rulers to account is equivalent to saying the system does not work. They are all in it together.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Scandalous!


      Accountability is something that 'others' take !!!

      This country seems to have created a generation or two of so called leaders (Political and otherwise) that are 'genetically' incapable of taking responsibility for anything.

      'Sloping shoulders' taken to the nth degree !!!

      2029 gives plenty of time for yet more excuses and delays and expanding costs ..... as per usual for Govt projects :(

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Real devs test in production

    Worked for a great company which had the great misfortune of integrating Kodiak into their main product. Kodiak is supplied as a SAAS set of functions we called 'in the cloud'. Whatever code we wrote, it ultimately came down to Kodiak holding up their end of the deal.

    Normal practice is to have at least dev + test environments. When the dev environment is stable enough, the changes are migrated to the test environment. Not so with Kodiak where *everything* was done in the one environment - features, bug fixes, config, testing, everything. It was not uncommon for the environment to go down for several hours during the day. Best one was a change which took them a week to revert but they somehow managed to lose everyone's configuration data. One 'migration' took them three weeks as they were unable to bring the system up.

    Every time Kodiak went down, the whole project team were left twiddling their thumbs until Kodiak fixed whatever went wrong. At least it was cheaper than the £20 MILLION (!) they wanted for a separate test environment.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Call them out

    I’m not saying they should… but what happens if Motorola call the UK Gov out and threaten to switch off Airwave if their terms and costs aren’t agreed to ?

    1. Spazturtle Silver badge

      Re: Call them out

      Then the government would invoke the civil contingencies act and Motorola would find out that despite how powerful modern corporations are, they are powerless when the government wants to truly destroy you.

      1. VoiceOfTruth Silver badge

        Re: Call them out

        Motorola is an American company = no chance of that happening. If Motorola was Chinese, highly likely.

  4. Red Ted


    Presumably there's no chance of applying this cap retrospectively to cover the five years since the ESN was supposed to start?

    I make that a cool one billion quid.

  5. heyrick Silver badge

    Just to put this into context since big numbers are meaningless

    That two billion that blithely got pissed away on that one thing is around £30 per person. Every baby, schoolgirl, granny, and hedge fund manager...

    ...and they're hoping to save about £3 per person per year.

  6. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Ah, the UK

    The aspiring millionnaire's dream world.

    Fail all you can while raking in the dough.

    Actually, a monarchy ain't that bad these days, now is it ?

    1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

      Re: Ah, the UK

      "Actually, a monarchy ain't that bad these days..." - I agree with your view although when you look at the history of monarchies in the UK then I think we'd be much better to just return to having a Queen ... our history has been well described (unfortunately) if you watch the musical SIX

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fortnums in the news......again?

    Quote: "...the Airwave Network that serves police, fire and ambulance services ..."

    No mention of the Metropolitan Police (aka "Wayne Couzens University") using these services to share racist, sexist and homophobic content.

    No mention that citizens and taxpayers are paying for this disgraceful example of awful project management.

    Perhaps Fortnums shopping bags stuffed with folding money might be involved?

    I think we should be told!

    1. NeilPost Silver badge

      Re: Fortnums in the news......again?

      I don’t think WhatsApp works on Airwave handsets.

  8. vogon00

    Title is wrong....

    "UK's Emergency Services Network unlikely to start operating until 2029"

    FTFU :-)

  9. Jim Whitaker

    Gosh I'm surprised said no one ever.

    1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge

      Certainly no one in the US who remembers Nextel.

      Motorola created Nextel to eliminate privately owned two-way radios. The idea was to replace all those private tow truck, plumber and taxi dispatch systems with a single, Motorola owned and operated cellular-like digital network, where Moto (through Nextel) would sell (proprietary, single source, natch) radio gear to the various customers, who would then be charged for use of the Nextel network.

      I think it lasted about 30 years. It's gone now, replaced by cellular. Not sure if it was ever profitable or how the coverage was. Motorola loves to build proprietary communications networks and lock users into them. It's what they do. There's a similar integrated national first-responder network being proposed here in the US, but I'm not sure how far it has gotten. Agencies seem reluctant to put all their eggs in that basket (to use a seasonally appropriate metaphor), but maybe Motorola can pull another rabbit out of the hat...

  10. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

    On the bright

    side , its provided Motorola managers with an inexhaustable source of wealth for the past 20 years.

    Imagine how many boats/homes they wouldn't have been able to buy if the thing worked and was delivered on time

    I put a joke icon but this thing aint no joke is it

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