Last year, Vodafone announced that it will use its new Sure Signal+ ‘femtocell’ unit which looked like a broadband router and could be deployed to enable indoor mobile coverage and internet access in underground locations and deep inside buildings which regular mobile networks couldn't penetrate. The new move was part of the network's new Community Indoor Sure Signal programme.
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Vodafone asked rural communities to apply for the programme on or before 1st of September so that they could benefit from Vodafone's indoor mobile coverage which offered download and upload speeds of 4 Mbps and 2 Mbps respectively along side mobile voice support. Vodafone announced that it would select to a 100 rural communities under the programme before the end of the year.
Vodafone today announced that Wortwell Bell Inn near Harleston in South Norfolk has become the first community hub to benefit from its Community Indoor Sure Signal programme. Apart from community centres, pubs and village halls will also be covered under the network's programme in due course.
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“Community hubs, like pubs and village halls, across the UK play an important part in rural life and supporting the local economy. We want to ensure all our customers can enjoy the benefits of mobile connectivity wherever they are but appreciate there are some communities which will take longer to get to using traditional methods. We remain committed to innovative programmes, like ROSS and CISS, which help bring coverage to communities who need it,” said Jorge Fernandes, CTO at Vodafone UK.
Back in August of last year, the Bear and Ragged Staff pub in Bransford, Worcester became the first UK pub to officially join Vodafone's new indoor mobile coverage programme. “We are absolutely delighted with our Vodafone Sure Signal+ unit which is providing our business with excellent Vodafone mobile coverage. Being located in a rural area, this is something we have struggled with but Vodafone have provided us with a solution. It was extremely easy to install and within minutes we were connected to the world!” said Lynda Williams from The Bear and Ragged Staff.