Ofcom urged to boost mobile broadband for rural areas
MPs have called on Ofcom to extend superfast mobile internet coverage to 98 per cent of the UK.
During a debate in the House of Commons, a cross-party group of MPs backed a motion proposing that the communications regulator increase the availability of the 800MHz mobile broadband spectrum.
The move was put forward by Conservative MP for Cumbria Rory Stewart, who described it as the "last chance" to secure improved mobile broadband coverage for roughly six million people living in remote regions.
Ofcom is currently carrying out a consultation on its plans to auction off the rights to the new 4G spectrum, which enables connections at speeds of up to 100Mbps.
The 800MHz spectrum is favoured for rural broadband connections because it is dedicated to 4G internet speeds and functions well over long distances.
"At the end of the month, the Ofcom consultation closes," Mr Stewart explained.
"This is a spectrum on which we all depend for our smartphones, our iPads, our iPhones. This is the spectrum which is ideal for rural areas," he added.
According to a report from Ofcom, the regulator expects 4G networks to deliver data capacity gains of more than 200 per cent compared with existing 3G networks.