Vodafone has announced that it is using OpenRAN technology to bring mobile coverage to hard-to-reach rural areas around the UK. In its latest update, the company said that it had introduced 4G to seven new areas including Morehampton, Lifton, Selborne, Pendine, Halkyn, Bradfield, and Middleton-in-Teesdale; these are the first areas across Devon, Hampshire, Wales, Yorkshire, and Country Durham to get the benefits of OpenRAN technology.
With OpenRAN technology, mobile operators have access to more interoperable hardware and software making networks more cost-effective to run. Vodafone said that it will be building 2,500 5G and 4G OpenRAN sites over the coming years and have them live by 2027. The primary beneficiaries of these networks will be those out in rural areas where connectivity is bad.
Commenting on today’s news, Andrea Donà, Vodafone’s Chief Network Officer in the UK, said:
“This new technology is helping us to deliver 4G coverage to new areas. With OpenRAN, we can bring 4G coverage to some of our most remote and rural communities for the first time, helping to give more people a digital connection and closing the digital divide.”
To clarify, while Vodafone has a goal of rolling out 2,500 OpenRAN sites by 2027, those in the seven towns and villages mentioned earlier will not have to wait long for the 4G connectivity if it hasn’t been switched on already.