Ofcom has published a revised version of its infrastructure report for 2011. The good news is that 73 per cent of UK households get 3G from all networks; but 30 per cent of the country isn't covered by 3G at all.
You might say that if a large majority of the people in Britain can actually get 3G at home, then why is a low geographic coverage bad? Not everyone stays in their homes all the time, you do leave the house right? When you're at home you can just use your home Wi-Fi; but its when you're travelling between towns and cities, when you don't really know where you're going or need to do work from a remote location that poor coverage can really bite.
It's always been assumed that some networks are better in certain areas than others and it doesn't look like that's going to change anytime soon. In actual fact only 13 per cent of the country gets 3G coverage from all five major networks, so knowing where you'll likely be and which network actually covers that area is crucial. Ofcom has a nice interactive map available that accompanies the report -- well worth checking out if you're getting crappy signal from your current provider.
The UK fairs a little better when it comes to 2G coverage with 97 per cent of homes receiving coverage and two-thirds of the country-by-area covered by all four major networks. While that may not be much good for all those smartphone wielders, at least you'll be able to make a call still. You still call people right? [Ofcom via ZDnet]