EU antitrust chief warns against telecoms mergers  

EU competition chief Margrethe Vestager has issued a stern warning against further consolidation in the bloc's telecommunications industry, countering a recent EU report that advocated for mergers among operators to bolster networks.

Speaking at a conference in Brussels, Vestager forcefully rejected the notion that more concentrated national telecoms markets would lead to better outcomes.

"No evidence suggests that more concentrated national markets lead to better...

Virgin Media O2 launches ‘smart support’ to proactively solve issues

Virgin Media O2 has begun rolling out a new "smart support" service aimed at proactively solving broadband issues for customers at no extra cost.

According to the company's research, over a third (34%) of British broadband users wouldn't feel confident trying to fix WiFi issues themselves—despite 98 percent relying on the internet daily.

The smart support service promises to enhance streaming, video calling, and gaming by monitoring customers' WiFi hubs and connection...

CMA launches in-depth probe into Vodafone-Three UK merger

The UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has confirmed it will conduct an in-depth Phase 2 investigation into the proposed merger between mobile operators Vodafone and Three. 

The competition watchdog had previously expressed concerns that the £11 billion ($13.92 billion) deal could lead to higher prices for consumers and reduced investment in Britain's mobile networks.

Last month, the CMA told Vodafone and Three they had five working days to respond with...

CMA raises concerns about proposed Vodafone-Three merger

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has expressed concerns over the proposed merger between Vodafone and Three, two of the UK's four major mobile network operators.

The regulator launched its initial Phase 1 investigation in January after the two companies announced a joint venture agreement last year that would combine their 27 million customers under a single network provider.

The CMA's 40-day Phase 1 review aimed to identify whether the deal could lead to a...

UK led European full fibre rollout in 2023 but lags in uptake

The UK added 4.7 million homes to its full fibre broadband footprint in the year leading up to September 2023, outpacing every other European country.

According to the latest market report from the FTTH Council Europe, this rapid expansion brought the UK's total fibre homes passed to 17.1 million—ranking it third in Europe behind France (26.3 million) and Turkey (18 million).

Given the UK's population size and need to catch up on fibre deployment, its leading position...

Government programme boosts 4G coverage in rural Wales

Several rural communities in Wales are now accessing fast and reliable 4G mobile coverage thanks to the UK government's Shared Rural Network initiative to tackle poor connectivity in remote areas.

The first of 86 planned 4G mobile masts have been switched on this month in places like Pont-rhyd-y-groes, Ysbyty Ystwyth, LLanafan, Tynygraig, West Fedw and Trawsgoed in Powys County. Residents, businesses and tourists in these areas can now benefit from improved 4G coverage from all...

Virgin Media O2 trials new approach to boosting mobile coverage

Virgin Media O2 has successfully trialled a new approach to boosting mobile services by leveraging its existing fixed network infrastructure along with new smart poles. This innovative solution could help boost mobile coverage across local areas in the UK.

The trial, conducted in collaboration with shareholder Liberty Global, involved installing compact smart poles adjacent to Virgin Media's fibre network cabinets. These poles, significantly smaller than traditional mobile phone...

UK Government urges more telecoms infrastructure sharing

The UK government is urging telecoms companies to prioritise sharing existing infrastructure like telegraph poles before installing new ones for broadband deployment. 

In a letter to the telecoms industry, Julia Lopez, the Minister of State for Data and Digital Infrastructure, cited increasing public concerns around the "duplication of overhead fibre networks" across the country.

Lopez said MPs have relayed constituents' frustrations about feeling they have no control...

Vodafone UK completes 3G shutdown to enhance 4G/5G services

Vodafone UK has followed EE's announcement this week by officially shutting down its 3G mobile network nationwide. This transition allows for the repurposing of related radio frequencies to bolster the faster 4G and 5G services.

While Vodafone claims the switch-off is complete as of this week, it slightly missed its initial target of finishing by the end of January 2024. Additionally, a "small number of locations" with "UK security significance" and some remote rural areas will...

Berlin is Europe’s 5G performance leader

A new report finds that Berlin has the best overall 5G mobile network performance across 10 European capitals. 

The comprehensive benchmark, conducted by network testing firm MedUX, analysed the quality and speed of 5G services in major cities across Europe.

For the report, researchers drove over 4,000 kilometres across 10 countries during 2023 to conduct network tests to grade "Quality of Experience" for average consumers.

Berlin edged out second-place...