TfL cans mobiles on the tube plan
Thank f*ck for that
Transport for London has given up on plans to get mobile phones working underground.
TfL said the technology was available but it was unable to get anyone interested enough to pay to get the kit installed underground.
We're betting the real reason is that it is so damned noisy on most parts of the Underground that you wouldn't be able to have a conversation by phone anyway.
Betting on punters using the system to send texts and download data has obviously not tempted anyone.
A spokeswoman for TfL said: "London Underground tendered for a trial of mobile phones on the Waterloo and City line, but the market has yet to provide us with a credible proposal for enabling mobile phone use on the Tube.
"While it is technically possible to deploy mobile phone and data wireless solutions on the deep level Underground tunnels and stations, the unique nature and environment of the Tube mean that project costs would be prohibitively high at this time."
Prague and Newcastle both have full mobile access, but London was mulling "to the platform edge" access last time we checked in 2004 - so phones would work in stations but not on trains.
By 2005 TfL was claiming it had received more than 70 bids to install the technology required.
The idea was to split revenue from calls and texts between operators and TfL. ®
Tfl - good negotiators - not likely
Yeah, really great negotiation skills which have achieved nothing in 12 years. Even a halfwit realises when its its not getting anywhere. OTOH, if you don't want cellular coverage it is a good tactic but lets be clear - this is incompetence, not a desire to fail deliberately. As taxpayers, their incompetence in increasing their third party income sources should result in some sanctions as its costing us all money from the taxation purse.
And yes, the new windows on the new rolling stock has metallised film on it and none of the trains were ever built with a suitable EMI profile in place - particularly in deep tube sections where they is no room for even a stub antenna to collect for an internal peta-cell. Leaky feeder is used extensively all over London Underground public areas - unfortunately most of it doesn't carry 1800MHz (most of Orange and T-Mobile services) and the repeaters don't cover those ranges.
"Transfers between the suburban rail, the "subway" system, and buses is just about non-existent"
Yes we've been working to build that sort of dysfunctional infrastructure here for some time. We call it transport de-regulation. We now have multiple bus companies competing on high load roads, nothing in between and massive congestion in the city centre as they all converge.
This was courtesy of a former Tory advisor who said he wanted to see a bus service like they have in Chile, where each bus driver owns his bus, like a taxi cab. He did not use them himself of course.
"at the time demanded 100% coverage and pretty much all of the revenue."
This is where those 400Km of track start to cause trouble.
"it could be achieved to the platform edge with only a small number of base stations."
I would have guessed one base station per station, if you could run remote aerials around some of the bigger stations.
"On the train was never practical given the noise and the shielding effect of the carriages themselves."
I'm a bit surprised at this. The idea of "Leaky" coaxial cable running in tunnels was reported on since the mid 1970s at least (Wireless World 1976 IIRC) and modern mobiles have noise cancelling microphones. Is the EM sealing inside carriages that good? Do the drive motors put out that much EMI?
"the LuL insistence that it would receive the majority of the revenues for calls made while on its premises"
LuL showing quite astonishing negotiating skills.
Simply not true ....
This is simply not true. In 1996 London underground received proposals from two operators to fit cellular coverage at approximately 50 stations at no cost. These were the high usage stations within the Circle/District line 'bottle' with the exceptions of a few stations with particularly low traffic levels. The offer included a modest revenue share but was never accepted as LuL at the time demanded 100% coverage and pretty much all of the revenue.
Since then there have been numerous 'trials' all of which showed how easily it could be achieved to the platform edge with only a small number of base stations. On the train was never practical given the noise and the shielding effect of the carriages themselves.
The stumbling block was always the same - the LuL insistence that it would receive the majority of the revenues for calls made while on its premises. It has never been a technical issue - purely greed on the part of TfL these days.