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More stations and Tube lines across Central London get high-speed mobile coverage

All Elizabeth line stations now have 4G mobile coverage as the Mayor and TfL’s programme to improve connectivity for those travelling underground continues.

May 14, 2024 | London, UK 

More stations and Tube lines across Central London get high-speed mobile coverage

  • Paddington, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf and Woolwich on the Elizabeth line now have 4G coverage – meaning all stations along this line now have mobile coverage
  • Victoria and Piccadilly line customers now starting to benefit from 4G and 5G mobile coverage, with further stations and tunnelled sections going live through Central London later this month
  • Around 25 per cent of Tube stations which are ‘underground’ now have mobile coverage
  • The Mayor has committed to completing work across all of the London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, London Overground and the Elizabeth line by the end of 2025

All Elizabeth line stations now have 4G mobile coverage as the Mayor and TfL’s programme to improve connectivity for those travelling underground continues.

Paddington, Canary Wharf, Whitechapel and Woolwich stations all recently gained 4G mobile coverage - meaning that all Elizabeth line stations now have mobile coverage – from ticket halls all the way to the platforms. Work to deliver coverage within the tunnelled sections of the Elizabeth line continues, with the first sections between Bond Street and Liverpool Street expected to get coverage within the coming month, with the whole line completed later this year.

Providing uninterrupted mobile coverage provides additional reassurance to those travelling on the network, making it easier for customers to stay in touch with friends and family as well as allow staff to better provide information and better assist customers with their journeys. The system, delivered in partnership with Boldyn Networks, will also host the new Emergency Services Network (ESN), which when fully operational, will give first responders immediate access to life-saving data, images and information in live situations and emergencies on the frontline. 

Following line testing to ensure that the introduction of 4G and 5G mobile coverage would not impact existing safety systems required to run a safe and reliable network, the tunnelled section between Euston and Warren Street on the Victoria line, as well as Covent Garden station on the Piccadilly line, have also both begun receiving mobile coverage. The tunnelled sections between Piccadilly Circus and Hyde Park Corner on the Piccadilly line will also go live in the coming weeks,  meaning more customers heading to and from the West End can stay better connected while travelling underground.

Next month, coverage will also begin on the Bakerloo line, further helping those travelling through central London stay in touch. The southern end of the Northern line from Stockwell to Morden will also start to get mobile coverage shortly, with 4G and 5G coverage due to become available at Clapham Common station next week, and further tunnels and stations going live during the summer.

The introduction of high-speed mobile coverage by TfL and Boldyn Networks means that customers can stay better connected as they travel to and from the West End to shop, meet friends and visit the area's theatres, restaurants and bars. All four mobile network operators - Three UK, EE, Vodafone, and Virgin Media O2 (VMO2) - are taking part in the rollout.

Currently, around 31 out of 121 Tube stations with platforms that are underground, and therefore usually unable to get a mobile signal, as well as connecting tunnels, have mobile coverage. This is around 25 percent of stations which are ‘underground, and when combined with Tube stations which are above ground, means that more than two thirds of all stations on the Tube network now have mobile coverage available.

To highlight this, TfL has updated its map to show the expected coverage by the end of summer 2024. This continued progress means that a significant proportion of the entire Tube network (around 80 per cent of stations across the network) as well as the entire Elizabeth line, remain on track to have mobile coverage by the end of 2024.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “This is yet another step towards ensuring Londoners and visitors can stay connected on our transport network. 

“I promised that customers would be able to access high-speed mobile coverage at all stations and in tunnels, and I’m pleased to see how quickly the team are moving to enable 4G and 5G connectivity. Now, customers can access the latest travel information, keep in touch with colleagues, friends and family, use social media and stream music at every station along the Elizabeth line. This is just one of the many ways we are supporting Londoners as we build a better, fairer and more prosperous London for everyone.”

Shashi Verma, Chief Technology Officer at TfL said: “It’s great to see that all Elizabeth line stations, and even more Tube stations, now have high-quality mobile coverage for the first time. This programme is gathering pace and we are working hard to bring the benefits of being able to stay in contact while travelling through our city as quickly as possible.”

Billy D’Arcy, CEO of UK & Ireland at Boldyn Networks, said: “With all Elizabeth lines stations now offering 4G mobile coverage, this milestone shows the rapid progress of our work to deploy connectivity across the London Underground. Customers can stay connected with friends and family at some of the busiest stations across central London, and with further expansion of connectivity throughout the summer period, this will help to create a safer and smarter city for residents, businesses and visitors.

The project is being implemented by Boldyn Networks, one of the world's leading neutral host network providers, who was awarded a 20-year concession by TfL in June 2021 to deliver high speed, 5G-ready mobile connectivity across the entire London Underground network. Boldyn Networks, formerly BAI Communications, is installing a fibre backbone across the capital to improve connectivity both above and below ground, bringing wide reaching socio-economic benefits to local businesses and communities.

Around 500 people are working overnight across the Tube network to install mobile equipment, with all works needed to be tidied away before the network opens for customers every morning. Once fully delivered, more than 2,000 kilometres of cabling as well as thousands of radios are expected to be installed within tunnels and stations, all of which will be fitted outside of operational hours. 

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