Feeds

No signal in Seascale? Countryside Alliance wants to hook you up

No really, hunting and fishing chaps want to help not-spot spotters

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Taking a break from the promotion of bloodsports, rural campaign group the Countryside Alliance is looking for help mapping mobile phone not-spots in the hope of embarrassing operators into filling them.

The wax-jacket-wearing organisation is asking those who care about rural mobile coverage to install Root Metrics on their smartphone. The app, which records radio strength and GPS coordinates, comes from the eponymous US outfit which makes money analysing the collected data, but provides free coverage maps which the 'Alliance uses to highlight the holes.

The UK government is committed to spending £150m of taxpayers' cash on extending rural coverage, and while the Countryside Alliance is more associated with the right to kill things with dogs and/or guns, it also promotes a rural lifestyle which, these days, includes constant telephony.

The UK version of the Root Metrics app is more concerned with data speeds than voice connections, though it records the availability of both. It also measures tested connection speed, so is more accurate than the operators' numbers which are based on best-case scenarios.

Root Metrics sends out regular updates, pointing out (for example) that Edinburgh has faster mobile internet than Glasgow (which, given the demographic spread, we could have worked out), but more surprising is that Nottingham and Coventry have faster mobile internet than London once backhaul and contention issues are taken into account.

Root Metrics' business is all about scale - if they can get their app installed on enough handsets, to create enough data points, then their business will work in the UK as it does in the USA. To do that, however, it needs volunteers who feel they're contributing to something worthwhile.

Bolstering the business of an American company clearly doesn't cut it, but contributing to a database which will be used to lobby the government for better rural coverage just might, which is why the Countryside Alliance's initiative appeals. ®

Bootnote

For those wondering, Seascale is a village on the West Cumbrian coast.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Of COURSE Stephen Elop's to blame for Nokia woes, says author
'Google did have some unique propositions for Nokia'
FCC, Google cast eye over millimetre wireless
The smaller the wave, the bigger 5G's chances of success
It's even GRIMMER up North after MEGA SKY BROADBAND OUTAGE
By 'eck! Eccles cake production thrown into jeopardy
Mobile coverage on trains really is pants
You thought it was just *insert your provider here*, but now we have numbers
Don't mess with Texas ('cos it's getting Google Fiber and you're not)
A bit late, but company says 1Gbps Austin network almost ready to compete with AT&T
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.