A big pat on the back for Vodafone

By Steve Biddle, in , posted: 24-Mar-2008 17:52

Those people who have followed my rambling over the years will know I both love and hate Vodafone. I'm passionate about mobile technology and love the Vodafone brand but there are aspects of their company and products that really get to me!

One thing that has annoyed me over the years has been some very significant coverage deadspots that they have had in the Wellington area. These aren't just areas where calls occasioanally drop, in some cases they are entire suburbs with virtually non existing Vodafone coverage.

One area that has been very bad has been the Eastern Bays from Point Howard right around to Eastbourne. Apart from a 900Mhz cellsite at Eastbourne all the bays along the way have relied on coverage from the other side of Wellington Harbour which has meant that mobile in car coverage has been terrible and inbuilding coverage in some of the most expensive homes in the region has been virtually non existant. Coverage has also typically been 900Mhz as the 2100Mhz 3G signal hasn't carried well across the water.

Over the past few weeks Vodafone have finally done something about this. As well as the Eastbourne site having been given new 3G radio gear 4 new 3G sites have been installed along Marine Drive. These are the now common cylindrical 3G sites and all 4 are mounted on light standards.

Sites are located at Lowry Bay (near the boat ramps), York Bay, and two sites to cover the corner of the road in Sunshine Bay and Days Bay. These sites are now all active and deliver continuous in car coverage along Marine Drive and great indoor coverage in most areas with Days Bay in particular now having great coverage when in the past inbuilding coverage was virtually non existant.

There have been a large number of 3G sites rolled out in Wellington over the past few months and it's now obvious that Vodafone see their WCDMA network as a replacement for GSM. If you don't have a 3G handset then you won't be able to take advantage of this enhanced coverage.

Good work Vodafone!




Upgraded Eastbourne site showing 900MHz and 2100MHz panel in the middle. These 900MHz panels are the originals that have been on this site since it was installed. Vodafone have replaced a lot of these panels, it's good to see that they've left a few remaining for old times sake! :-)



Lowry Bay 3G Site



Mahina Bay Site


Sunshine Bay site - this and the Days Bay site are on the same corner.


Days Bay site - this and the Sunshine Bay site are on the same corner.

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Comment by alasta, on 24-Mar-2008 19:27

Good news. Now they need to get some coverage into Riversdale and/or Castlepoint. I've been moaning about the lack over coverage there for several years now.


Author's note by sbiddle, on 24-Mar-2008 19:38

Yes - Vodafone's lack of coverage out there is annoying. Telecom have had coverage there for many years now and both places are extremely popular destinations.


Comment by snonoz, on 24-Mar-2008 20:04

Anyone know if there is anything planned for Maungaraki??? I am SO SO sick of dropped calls and not even enough coverage to get a txt msg sometimes! Not like it's a small area with no money either, won't even start on the lack of Wireless internet and any other cabling up here :(


Comment by George Merriman, on 25-Mar-2008 21:10

Yep, well done VF. Now, how about spending some money in regional centres and rural areas, where a large number of people can only get marginal signal, and no 3G at all??


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sbiddle's profile

Steve Biddle
Wellington
New Zealand


I'm an engineer who loves building solutions to solve problems.


I also love sharing my views and analysis of the tech world on this blog, along with the odd story about aviation and the travel industry.

My interests and skillset include:

*VoIP (Voice over IP). I work with various brands of hardware and PBX's on a daily basis
  -Asterisk (incl PiaF, FreePBX, Elastix)
  -Polycom
  -Cisco
  -Linksys
  -Patton
  -Zyxel
  -Snom
  -Sangoma
  -Audiocodes

*Telecommunications/Broadband
  -xDSL deployments
  -WiMAX
  -GSM/WCDMA
  -WiFi

*Structured cabling
  -Home/office cabling
  -Phone & Data

*Computer networking
  -Mikrotik hardware
  -WAN/LAN solutions

*Wireless solutions
  -Motel/Hotel hotspot deployments
  -Outdoor wireless deployments, both small and large scale
  -Temporary wireless deployments
   
*CCTV solutions
  -Analogue and IP

I'm an #avgeek who loves to travel the world (preferably in seat 1A) and stay in nice hotels.


+My views do no represent my employer. I'm sure they'll be happy to give their own if you ask them.


You can contact me here or by email at stevenbiddle@gmail.com

twitter.com/stevebiddle