We’ll always have seamless Signal Strength

This never happened, obviously. And if it did happen it certainly didn't happen like this. Why Signal Strength is better than Coverage and Speed.

Location: Office of the CEO, an operator.

“Hey, marketing team, can you step in here a moment?”

“Sure, boss”

“I’ve been looking through our positioning on some of this 4G stuff. Apparently we’re not going to compete on speed. Speed is, like, not an actual indicator of usefulness to the customer.”

“That’s right boss. I mean, you only need 2Mbps to watch a video so what’s the point of having a 150Mbps peak rate carrier aggregation all over the place. Nobody needs that, boss. A decent 2Mbps, but we can call it say 20Mbps or whatever, it doesn’t really matter to your average idiot.”

“Have you been speaking to the networks team?”

“No boss, promise. Not after what happened last time.”

“Rightio. It’s just that you know with this Project Seasonal Leap Forward programme I rather thought we were catching up with those other chaps and getting a fast network, but now you’ve explained it I understand. But on another thing, how come Something Somewhere has hundreds of towns covered already? They throw out a press release every time they’ve connected another lampost in Rhyl, for God’s sake. It makes them look like they’re blanketing the country, makes them look like their rollout is really pushing out there. Shouldn’t we be doing something like that?”

“Ah, well you see, we had a chat about this and we think there’s an angle that we only announce a town as covered when we’ve really covered all of it. We’ve heard that Something Somewhere, and I know this will shock you boss, sometimes only have a site or two lit up and then they call that town ‘covered’. That’s not how we do things, and the operations team… sorry I mean our customer research, shows that our customers really value our honesty on that.”

“Right. I see. So, if we are not going with speed, or coverage, what’s our differentiator on the network?”

“Well, Dave in Netw… er I mean our consumer research says that what really matters to customers is Signal Strength”

“Signal Strength?”

“Yes, boss. It’s a great indicator of actual usefulness. Signal Strength is about actually having the capability to do whatever you want, wherever you want to do it. It’s not about speeds or the most coverage.”

“So wait, wherever I am if I have good Signal Strength I can do whatever I want. And if I can do whatever I want, then I must have decent speed too? Wouldn’t it be easier just to go with coverage and speed, then?”

“Well, boss, as we said, right now our line is that it’s not all about coverage.”

“But you just said, do whatever, wherever, whenever you want? That must mean great coverage. I mean that’s what Wherever means?”

“Yes but we don’t call it that. We prefer Signal Strength. Unless it’s indoors, boss, then we are good with coverage because of our 800MHz spectrum.”

“Right yes, that’s something we’ve really got those other lot on, isn’t it? Our 800MHz.”

“Yes, except for You2. They’ve got about the same as us. And Something Somewhere have got a little too. And of course we once told Ofcom that refarming 900MHz wouldn’t give us a big advantage in terms of coverage so we need to tread a little carefully.”

“OK, so we’re careful on coverage. What about speed? I mean if Signal Strength means I can do whatever, there must be decent speed.”

“Not necessarily, sir. It might just mean you have the capacity you need.”

“Which is like speed, right? I mean, more bandwidth more speed. More bandwidth more capacity. It’s sort of the same thing. More bandwidth, low users, more speed. More bandwidth, lots of users, it gets shared out.”

“Except, boss, some networks might be able to provide speed but not capacity, we’re about depth, and breadth, and combining that depth with breadth in a manner that delights customers. That’s why we like Signal Strength.”

“And you’re sure this Signal Strength stuff goes over well with customers?”

“Oh yes, it tests very well. It’s like the bars on the phone, everyone gets it. One bar, start worrying and see if restarting it might fix it, five bars – good to Skype granny.


“Er… sorry, good to RCS Granny.”

“Right. So we are promising 5 bars everywhere? I like that. Bring in some drawings and copy on that.”

“Well not really, you see we’re more about promising enough bars to do what you want at any time, wherever. It might be you only need one bar, so that’s what you’ll get.”

“But you just said we are going to go on Signal Strength. So we want the best signal, and that’s 5 bars.”

“The most appropriate signal, sir. The best signal for your needs. That’s true Signal Strength.”

“OK, of course I get that now. Yes. So write that up. And Becky?”

“Yes boss?”

“I’m still allowed seamless, aren’t I? I heard Baksaas talk about it at the last CEO Forum and I think we should be seamless too.”

“Yes, boss, we’ll always have seamless.”