Swedes lose coverage with smartphone switch

Swedes lose coverage with smartphone switch
The smartphone revolution in Sweden has come at the price of mobile phone coverage, reveals a new report that argues that the operators' coverage maps are out of date.

“The operators really should have one map for smartphones and one map for older mobile phones,” ­Urban Landmark at the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) told the Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper.

The agency reviewed the radio receiver in several phone models.

“We feel confident in saying that in general, the smartphones’ radio equipment was worse than in a ‘normal’ mobile phone,” Landmark said.

“The difference, when converted into the area of coverage, is about 20 percent less when using a smartphone.”

Landmark added that the quality of the radio equipment had had to give way for the many other technologies that a smartphone contains.

“The smartphone is a compromise with many components and several frequencies. To have enough room for everything one has had to compromise the quality of the radio parts,” Landmark said.

The difference in the quality of a telephone call, or being able to make a call at all, should be most noticeable on the fringes of an operator’s coverage zone, which at present are drawn out on a map after the old phones’ capacity to pick up a signal.

Operators Telia said it would look at the study and possibly take it into account when reviewing its maps of coverage zones.

“This is the kind of thing we might look at when we review our coverage maps. It’s possible we’ll have to make an adjustment,” said Telia spokesman Nicolas Rundbom to DN.

TT/The Local/at

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