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Mobile service is coming to the Tube © Adrien Ledoux / Unsplash
Mobile service is coming to the Tube © Adrien Ledoux / Unsplash

The London Underground Will Have 4G Mobile Phone Signal from 2019

Picture of Claire Lancaster
Tech & Entrepreneurship Editor
Updated: 4 December 2017

Londoners, rejoice – it will soon be even easier to avoid eye-contact on the Tube

In aid of the time-honoured London tradition of ignoring everyone around you while on public transport, Transport for London (TfL) has announced mobile signal for calls and data will available on the London Underground from 2019.

tubemobilephone

4G is coming to the Tube | © TfL

After successful trails on the Waterloo and City line with each of the four major operators – EE, Three, O2, and Vodafone – TfL announced the service would be ubiquitous, even in tunnels.

The tech won’t interfere with Wi-Fi network, which currently operates at 97% of stations and platforms across the Tube network.

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Engineers installing cabling in the Underground | © TfL

The move will see London’s public transport system catch up with Paris, New York, Berlin and Tokyo, where commuters already enjoy staring at their screens as they’re shuttled along dozens of metres under the ground.

The announcement follows Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s 2019 deadline as part of a drive to eliminate the capital’s no-signal zones.

‘This is part of our work to improve connectivity at home, in our high streets, public spaces and across the transport network,’ said Theo Blackwell, the Mayor of London’s chief digital officer. ‘TfL’s innovation shows we can make a real difference and benefit Londoners through using city-wide public assets in a smarter way, starting with the Tube.’

Like this? Check out 16 Things You May Not Know About the London Underground