If you live in the UK and use the London underground you’ve probably noticed that mobile phone reception is somewhat hit and miss, but London wants the underground covered for mobile phone reception by the Summer Olympics in 2012.
Thus according to an article over on Engadget and by way of Yahoo News, China’s Huawei is apparently offering to equip the London underground with mobile phone coverage for free, picking up the estimated £50 million bill or $80 million, to do so.
Apparently Huawei would regain their cash layout over time via maintenance of the system while word has it O2 and Vodafone have agreed to fork the bill to get the system of mobile transmitters installed in the ceilings of the tunnels.
A spokesperson for Transport for London has said… “Transport for London and the Mayor of London are currently in discussion with mobile phone operators and other suppliers about the potential provision of mobile phone services on the deep Tube network.”
However, Conservative lawmaker Patrick Mercer has said “It has been proven that a proportion of the cyberattacks on this country come from China. I wonder when the eyes of the world are upon us whether there is sense in using a Chinese firm to install a sensitive mobile network.”
Having said that, someone needs to get mobile coverage on the underground, and if Hauwei is prepared to foot the bill then why not let them?