Poor Mobile Coverage on UK Motorways Will Hinder a Driverless Revolution

By Gerald Lynch on at

It's frustrating not being able to stream a YouTube clip or access a webpage in a traffic jam because of patchy mobile data coverage. But for the many proposed driverless car systems which rely on a constant stream of data to stay aware of other vehicles on the road, it's vital. And, currently, the UK's on-the-road data coverage just isn't up to scratch to support that driverless future.

A new report from mobile analytics firm OpenSignal found that whilst on motorways mobile users failed to get a 3G or 4G signal 24 per cent of the time. On A-roads it was even worse, with mobile data inaccessible 33 per cent of the time.

The report also looked at rail lines, and found coverage to be similarly patchy there too, with signal dropping out 28 per cent of the time.

Looking at the individual network performance stats, Three and EE came out on top, with the networks managing to keep a 3G or 4G signal 92 per cent and 81 per cent of the time respectively. EE maintained a 4G signal most consistently, and also performed best across the UK's rail network. [OpenSignal via BBC]

Image Credit: Heavy Traffic on British Motorway from Shutterstock.com