T-Mobile offers coverage check for new customers

Mobile operator is taking steps to ensure new customers won't be disappointed with signal coverage

New T-Mobile customers can now have their homes and favourite locations evaluated for signal coverage before signing a contract.

Using a software package called StreetCheck, T-Mobile will be able to check coverage levels to a greater accuracy than before. It will even be able to analyse the difference between one end of a street and the other.

"When you go to a T-Mobile store to buy a contract, before we sell you a contract we will ask you to give us the postcodes of three important places for you, to check the coverage. If the coverage is not up to scratch we won't sell you a contract," Robin O'Kelly, T-Mobile's head of corporate communications, told ZDNet UK on Tuesday.

O'Kelly denied that this move implied T-Mobile's network's coverage was poor in places. Describing T-Mobile's UK coverage levels as being 99 percent for GSM and 70 percent for 3G, he said: "We wouldn't be doing this if we didn't have a lot of confidence in it. No company in their right mind would do it if they had a weak network."

Customers will receive a printout indicating the predicted coverage levels — measured in bars as on a phone — and they can cancel the contract within 14 days if the signal proves to be weaker than predicted .

The StreetCheck service, which was launched this week, is also available through the operator's Web site.