OneWeb seeks £3B for GEN2 satellites that could support navigation

OneWeb is looking to raise around £3 billion to expand its constellation with second-generation satellites that could support navigation.

The British firm is part-owned by the UK government and currently has 428 satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO) at around 1,200km. By the end of 2023, OneWeb aims to have increased the size of its constellation to 648.

OneWeb is already able to provide speeds exceeding 100Mbps and with sub-100ms latency. While impressive, OneWeb can’t...

Virgin Media O2, NEC and Rakuten activate Open RAN sites

Virgin Media O2, NEC, and Rakuten have activated their first commercial sites as part of an Open RAN partnership.

Open RAN helps to break up the relative monopoly held by a handful of telecom equipment vendors and provides greater diversity in national infrastructure.

“The successful activation of Virgin Media O2’s first UK macro-sites demonstrates the potential of the multi-vendor Open RAN model,” said Jeanie York, CTO at Virgin Media O2.

“We are...

BT staff pencil in further strikes over ‘insulting’ pay deal

The Communications Workers Union (CWU) is organising further BT and Openreach strikes over the coming months.

Around 40,000 Openreach engineers and BT call centre staff undertook strike action last month over “weak, insulting” below-inflation pay rises.

“Workers will not accept a massive deterioration in their living standards,” said Dave Ward, General Secretary of the CWU, last month.

“The serious disruption this strike may cause is entirely down to...

Martin Lewis wants roaming charges to be regulated

MoneySavingExpert’s Martin Lewis wants roaming charges to be regulated amid rocketing living costs.

UK RPI inflation has reached 11.7 percent, the highest in the G7, and is set to increase further later in the year. People up and down the country are increasingly struggling to make ends meet and the UK Government is widely seen as ignoring the crisis.

Energy bills are the biggest contributor to soaring inflation and it’s where Lewis has rightly focused the majority...

BT staff begin strike action over below-inflation pay rises

BT staff have begun strike action across the country in a row over below-inflation pay rises.

UK RPI inflation has reached 11.7 percent and is set to increase further later in the year. Many employers have offered pay rises to help ensure their staff aren’t left substantially worse off at the end of each month.

BT, for its part, offered its staff a £1,500 pay increase to help with the cost of living crisis. However, it’s been called a “weak, insulting” pay deal...

RootMetrics names EE the best UK network for ninth year

Mobile network performance measurement firm RootMetrics has named EE the UK’s leader for the ninth year running.

Overall, EE came out on top for all UK-wide RootScore categories ('Reliability', 'Accessibility', 'Speed', 'Data', 'Call', and 'Text').

Marc Allera, CEO of the consumer division at EE-owner BT, said:

“We are proud to be named the UK's best network for the ninth year running. Reliability is of huge importance to our customers, and we pride...

UK announces plans to ‘unleash’ 5G and 6G innovation

The UK Government has announced plans to “unleash” 5G and 6G innovation, including through a partnership with South Korea.

Up to £25 million has been set aside for the ‘Future Open Networks Research Challenge’. Academics and industry players can apply for funding to support their early-stage research into open and interoperable telecom solutions, such as Open Radio Access Network (Open RAN).

The Future Open Networks Research Challenge is part of the UK...

Eutelsat confirms OneWeb merge plan

French satellite firm Eutelsat has confirmed plans to merge with British low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite innovator OneWeb.

Eutelsat operates 36 geostationary (GEO) satellites, of which the first launched in 2000. The high altitudes of GEO satellites cover large geographic areas but have slow speeds and high latency.

LEO satellites – like those operated by OneWeb, SpaceX, and Telesat – require larger constellations to provide adequate coverage but support more...

Virgin Media O2 increases data-free services list to help with the cost-of-living crisis

Virgin Media O2 has boosted its list of services that customers can access for free as part of its efforts to support people during the cost-of-living crisis.

Virgin Media O2 customers will now be able to access the National Debtline, Business Debtline, Turn2us, Debt Advice Foundation, and National Energy Action without using any of their mobile data.

National Energy Action Chief Executive Adam Scorer says: “The energy crisis is already making life difficult for...

UK MNO customers will enjoy 4G/5G across the London Tube

Customers of all four UK mobile network operators (MNOs) will enjoy 4G/5G connectivity across the London Tube.

Shashi Verma, CTO at Transport for London (TfL), said:

“Mobile connectivity across the stations and tunnels across the Tube network will help our customers stay connected more easily as well as work, shop and stay in touch on the move. 

I’m delighted that all four major mobile operators are set to provide high-speed, uninterrupted 4G coverage on the...