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Testing, testing, 1, 2, 3, 4G: Tube comms trials for emergency crews
Wednesday, 19 July 2017 17:58

Transport for London has tentatively started testing 4G on the Tube for emergency services. TfL's CTO said he was not "absolutely confident" it would be complete by January, 2019, however.

The £2.9bn Airwave contract, which dates from 2000, will be switched off by 2020 and replaced by the 4G Emergency Services Network (ESN) run by EE.

Earlier this year, Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC) warned the UK Home Office's ESN programme "may require more testing and assurance work than the current December 2019 delivery date seems to allow for."

Shashi Verma, CTO and director of customer experience at TfL, told the

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5G is not just a radio: Welcome to the fibre-tastic new mobile world
Tuesday, 18 July 2017 20:04

Analysis When an executive from Nokia, of all companies, said 5G was as much about fibre as wireless, it was clear this was going to be different from previous mobile standards generations. 5G will not be driven by mobile broadband speeds as 4G was.

If higher data rates and larger numbers of broadband devices are an mobile network operator's only goals, it will be better to stick with LTE for many years to come, especially with Gigabit LTE becoming a reality (and the operator can always label it "5G" anyway). The superior efficiencies of the 5G New Radio will not

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Thanks for U-turning on biz-killing ban, Ofcom – now cough up, say GSM gateway bods
Tuesday, 18 July 2017 18:37

A former GSM gateway operator is threatening to reactivate a £20m legal claim against Ofcom after the UK regulator's past policies killed his company, according to documents seen by The Register .

The unnamed operator is asking the telecoms regulator to enter alternate dispute resolution rather than going straight into court proceedings.

"I should have benefited from the correct and lawful determination on COMUG [Commercial Multi User Gateway, a synonym for GSM gateway] on 25 July 2003," says the letter seen by El Reg . "In reality Ofcom and/or the Home Office unlawfully rendered it unlawful for me to build

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Openreach asks UK what it thinks about 10 million 'full fibre' connections
Tuesday, 18 July 2017 17:48

Openreach has launched a consultation seeking input from industry to create "full fibre" broadband in Blighty - part of its new cuddly, collaborative approach post legal separation from BT .

Under its proposals, the body could roll out fibre to 10 million premises by 2025. Openreach under BT had committed to laying two million full fibre lines by 2020.

Clive Selley, chief exec of Openreach, said the body wants to work "closely with communications providers, government and Ofcom" to build a much larger full fibre network.

“By using new techniques, we recently halved the cost of delivering ‘full fibre’ infrastructure,

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UK mobile number porting creaks: Arcane system shows its age
Thursday, 20 July 2017 21:41

Comment Problems with the way the UK has implemented mobile phone call routing are emerging as an architecture designed for a small volume of calls struggles under the weight of usage.

When you call a mobile and get a "number unavailable response" – without the call going to voicemail – it may be a much more deep-rooted problem than just poor coverage.

We saw an issue where calling a number on Vodafone from Three always failed, of course it took a while for it to dawn on anyone what was happening. You don’t know when someone has tried and failed

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Deutsche Telekom G.fast demo pushes G.Fast faster, further
Thursday, 20 July 2017 14:05

Deutsche Telekom and ADTRAN have showed off an emerging G.Fast technology called cDTA which, along with 212 MHz carrier spectrum, ramps system performance well into the gigabit range.

It's a development that will interest watchers of Australia's National Broadband Network, since the company rolling out the network recently signed with ADTRAN to supply kit for fibre-to-the-distribution-point (FTTdp) applications.

It's also of interest to Sckipio, specialist in creating copper technologies, silicon design, and reference designs, because the demo puts its cDTA implementation into a European carrier, the first other than British Telecom.

The Register spoke to Michael Weissman, marketing veep at

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