The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is planning to fight connectivity problem areas and bring mobile coverage to the London Underground.
In an announcement, Khan introduced his ‘Not-Spot’ team initiative which will look for blind spots in the city and develop solutions to improve coverage in the capital.
Transport for London will also be working at improving connectivity throughout London Underground, one of the largest blind spots in the city.
Currently, customers cannot make calls while on an underground train in London. The Elizabeth Line will be the first track to introduce mobile coverage, but this will not be live until December 2018.
Wi-Fi connection on the Tube is currently provided by Virgin Media at most stations. However, the internet only works at stations, and not while the carriage is moving.
TfL is expected to issue a notice requesting feedback from industry stakeholders on how it can use underground and street-level assets to improve connectivity and cost savings across its network.
As for overground rail, areas such as Rotherhithe, as well as some parts of Westminster and the City of London are considered to be some of the most problematic areas for connectivity in London.
The Mayor further announced the Digital Connectivity Funding Forum which will be held in the City Hall. The event will provide local authorities with the opportunity to apply for the government’s Digital Infrastructure Funding programme.
Khan, commented: ‘London is now a leading global tech hub, with thriving start-ups alongside major companies like Facebook, Amazon and Google.
But our digital connectivity needs to be improved…that means working to boost connectivity across London – tackling not-spots, delivering connectivity in the London Underground and working with local authorities to provide digital infrastructure fitting of a global tech hub.’
London is considered as one of Europe’s leading technology hubs, with 40,000 digital technology businesses which employ almost 200,000 people.