Richard Neudegg, head of regulation at uSwitch.com, said: “It’s encouraging to see the government and industry coming up with a solution to solve rural not spots. This is a welcome and ambitious course of action to resolve a situation that affects the lives of so many people.
“Only this month uSwitch.com highlighted how poor 4G coverage can be for so many people, with millions still facing problems connecting to their network every day.
“At present, only 67% of the UK has 4G coverage from all four main providers outdoors, so bringing coverage to 95% of the country by 2025 would make a huge difference.
“The idea of allowing national roaming between networks in rural areas has been considered many times over the years, but ultimately proved too difficult to implement. Network providers instead sharing new and existing infrastructure is more likely to successfully improve rural mobile coverage.
“While potentially exciting, this agreement still isn’t signed and has several legal hurdles to clear, so people in rural areas need to maintain pressure on the government and network providers to get this over the line.
“Competitive independence between providers is normally the best way to ensure the best possible deal for consumers, but for rural areas it is different. This solution could greatly improve the coverage for residents in rural areas, while giving them a wider choice of networks and tariff options.”