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Uswitch comments on Ofcom's new rules for stronger protection for essential phone boxes

Justina Miltienyte, head of policy at, said: “While many communities feel a strong nostalgic attachment to the traditional red phone box, it’s easy to overlook that they can play a life-saving role at times when mobiles aren’t available.

“For many communities these boxes are a lifeline in emergencies, and often the only option for children or vulnerable people seeking help.

“We’ve become so used to relying on our mobile phones that we can forget that significant parts of the country don’t have access to a good signal. More than 98% of urban premises receive an indoor voice signal, compared to as low as 80% in rural areas[1].

“With landline phones becoming redundant in 2025, keeping phone boxes in communities where there is no coverage from all four main operators is an essential service. But these areas still deserve better access to mobile coverage from the major networks. 

“If you’re struggling with your mobile signal, check the coverage maps from the four main providers, as there may be a network that offers better connectivity in your area.

“Households in areas with poor mobile signal may be able to use their broadband connection instead of a phone, by using WhatsApp or Wi-FI calling to make calls.”


1. Ofcom: Connected Nations


Sarika Patel
Phone: 07815 635259
Twitter: @UswitchPR

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