GSM operators in the UK.

Hello everyone,

Today, I’d like to share my experience with a GSM operator in the United Kingdom. You can find information about the major operators on this page.

Since my arrival in the UK in 2002, I have experimented with all the available networks in the market. It was astonishing to discover the subpar GSM signal quality in a country that is a member of the G8. I’m not referring to the service or pricing; rather, I’m focusing on signal and sound quality, which leaves much to be desired. To be clear, I’ve changed addresses 26 times in various locations across the UK over the span of 11 years, and I can speak from firsthand experience.

Even in London, there are areas where none of the operators can provide service, such as certain places in Sydenham Hill, Herne Hill, and Crystal Palace.

When traveling on the major “M” motorway, there’s no guarantee that you can seek help via your GSM mobile in case of an emergency.

I embarked on a quest to uncover the reasons behind this issue, and I believe I’ve found the answer. Health and safety regulations compel providers to limit the signal level to 32 dB. Naturally, this dramatically reduces the coverage distance of the antennas. A proper macro antenna should stand at 30 meters in height and provide at least 50 dB of signal strength. In reality, major antennas in large cities are macro cell antennas with signal strengths ranging from 5 to 10 dB.

If you want to check what signal coverage is available in your area in the UK, I recommend visiting this website.

Best of luck, and may you enjoy a reliable signal.

(actual on 2009-2012).

BeeLine GSM

Beeline is the trademark of the second largest cell-phone operator in Russian Federation, VimpelCom. Its headquarters are located in Moscow.

As of January 2005 Beeline has more than 25 million subscribers in 74 of 89 Russian regions, and in Kazakhstan, and less than 1% market share short of becoming the leader of the Russian cellular market in terms of subscriber base. Its revenue, profits and revenue per subscriber (ARPU) figures are slightly lower that competitor’s, Mobile TeleSystems’s, while being gradually improving in latest years.

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MTS – Russia

Mobile TeleSystems or MTS is the largest mobile operator in Russia and CIS with over 89.64 million subscribers as of April 30, 2008.

Having started in the Moscow license zone in 1994, МТS in 1997 received licenses for further areas, and began expansion, later entering other countries of the CIS. On October 31 2008, Vodafone announced a partnership deal with MTS, whereby Vodafone services will be available to MTS subscribers; some form of co-branding will follow, and both companies have noted the potential for more efficient purchasing.

The MTS wireless network operates using the GSM standard. It currently holds licences to provide mobile services in 87 out of 89 regions in Russia and the entire territories of Armenia, Ukraine, Belarus, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan.MTS is currently the biggest mobile operator in Central and Eastern Europe.


Orange UK


Orange UK is a mobile network operator and internet service provider in the United Kingdom which is owned by France Télécom. It was founded in 1994 by Hutchison Telecom which was later bought by Mannesmann AG and then in May 2000 sold to its present owners. Orange UK has over 17 million customers through its mobile and broadband services

Orange UK currently offers two mobile phone packages; pay as you go and pay monthly service plans.

As with other prepaid plans, pay as you go mobile users are given the option to top-up their phone via a swipe card, over the internet or via a credit or debit card.

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T-Mobile UK


T-Mobile UK was previously known as One 2 One, and before that as Mercury One 2 One. One 2 One was in its final days operated as a joint venture between Cable and Wireless and American cable provider Mediaone Group, which had a number of investments in Britain dating back to its days as the US West Media Group. One 2 One was the world’s first GSM 1800 network when it launched in September 1993. T-Mobile offers both pay-as-you-go and pay-monthly contract phones. The pay-monthly contracts are branded as Flext for both 18 month and 12 month contract customers as of February 2007; T-Mobile’s 12 month contracts were previously branded as Relax. The network also offers other contract options for off-peak users and customers who call within network predominantly. T-Mobile launched their 3G UMTS services in the Autumn of 2003.
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