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BT Mobile Coverage Guide

BT logo and a mobile phone

With an increasing number of people relying on mobile coverage and network speed, it’s no surprise that the top mobile networks are bending over backwards trying to outdo each other in these two areas. So, how does BT mobile coverage stack up in such a competitive market?


BT Mobile Coverage

BT’s mobile customers can rest assured they’re receiving some of the widest and fastest coverage in the UK and BT mobile can be proud that they also have faster speeds than rival networks. The main reason behind the success of the BT mobile network is because it “piggybacks” off one of the biggest and the fastest networks in the UK, EE.

When one network “piggybacks” off another, it means that it uses the other providers' network infrastructure instead of its own and in the case of BT, this is most definitely worthwhile since EE has the widest coverage and some of the fastest data speeds in the UK. This means that BT Mobile customers will also have access to some of the fastest data speeds available.

How does BT mobile coverage stack up?

Since BT uses EE’s network, it has a very advantageous position in the coverage department. Not only does EE, and therefore BT, cover 99% of the UK’s population that uses a 4G network, it also covers 98% of the population that uses 3G and 99% of the population that uses 2G.

BT mobile coverage by service type
BT mobile coverage by service type
Coverage of the UK population
4G network
Over 99%
3G network
98%
2G network
99%

How does BT mobile coverage compare to other networks?

Compared to it’s rival networks, BT mobile is still ahead of the pack in terms of 4G coverage but not by much. Below you can see exactly how BT’s impressive coverage numbers compare to other top mobile networks in the UK.

4G coverage comparison to other networks
Mobile Network
4G coverage of the UK population
BT Mobile
Over 99%
Vodafone
99%
O2
99%
Three
99.80%

BT Mobile Coverage Checker

When considering a mobile network and the coverage you’ll get, it’s highly recommended to check if the area where you live is covered by that particular network. With BT mobile, you have two ways to do this; by entering your details in an online coverage checker or by looking at a coverage map.

If this sounds complicated, don’t worry, it’s really not. We’ll go through the steps below and you’ll see just how quick and easy it is.

How to check BT mobile coverage in your area

  1. Head to the main BT mobile coverage checking page.
  2. Find the section that says ‘Coverage checker’. You should be able to see it right away without scrolling too much. It’s the part in the grey box.
  3. Then you need to enter the postcode or the place that you want to check coverage for in the required field.
  4. Don’t forget to answer the question below the field which asks ‘Is your phone 4G calling enabled?’ by clicking ‘yes’ or ‘no’ and then clicking the purple button which says ‘Check coverage’.

That’s all you have to do! If you get stuck on step 4 because you don’t know whether your 4G calling is enabled or not, that’s not a problem either. There is a very useful 4G calling guide where you can read all about this.

BT Mobile Coverage Map

BT mobile coverage map

Apart from using the coverage checker, as above, you can also check if your area is covered by checking out the BT mobile coverage map. This is a map which lets you check out which areas are covered by 2G, 3G or 4G networks and whether this network is available outdoors, indoors or both. Very handy! And don't worry, it's easy to use. We will go through the process below.

Remember that although the coverage map can give you useful insight into BT mobile coverage, there’s no guarantee that this information won’t change when you actually come to use the network. Factors such as building materials, trees and weather conditions can all affect coverage.

How to read the BT mobile coverage map

We know you’re itching to have a look at this coverage map so we’ll explain how to get to it and how to read it.

Man thinking
  1. The first thing you need to do is head to the coverage checker page as you did above.
  2. Scroll down the page until you reach the map. You’ll notice three important buttons at the top of the map. The buttons read; 4G, 3G and 2G and you’re able to switch between them to check the coverage for each of these services.
  3. Click on the service you want to check, for example, 4G.
  4. If you want to zoom in on an area, hold down the ‘Ctrl’ button of your keyboard and use the scroll function of your mouse to zoom into the area you want to see. Alternatively, you can hold down the ‘Ctrl’ button and press the + on the bottom right hand screen of your screen.
  5. You’ll see the map covered in two colours, light purple and dark purple. Dark purple means you’ll have coverage indoors & outdoors and light purple means coverage indoors.

BT Mobile Network Speeds

2G, 3G, 4G and 5G mobile coverage

The fact that BT mobile piggybacks off EE is fantastic news for customers because they not only get to enjoy EE’s brilliant coverage but they also get to enjoy EE’s impressive network speeds, without the EE price tag.

BT mobile customers can expect to receive ,on average, network speeds of 31 Mbps with most of their mobile phone deals but it doesn’t have to end there. Customers who choose to get the optional extra speed service can expect data speeds of 60 Mbps.

Apart from leading the pack in terms of mobile coverage, BT mobile is also a clear winner when it comes to network speed. This means that BT mobile customers can upload pictures, stream movies and programmes and download apps faster than customers of any other network.

Network speeds compared to other networks
Network
Average network speed
BT Mobile
28.90 Mbps
Vodafone
21.92 Mbps
Three
18.78 Mbps
O2
14.61 Mbps

BT Mobile Extra Speed Service

Although, BT’s standard 4G service is already top-of-the-range, there’s still more where that came from. BT mobile customers are able to double their network speed with BT’s ‘Extra Speed 4G’ add-on. This means they’ll be able to do everything they normally do but with speeds of up to 60 Mbps, compared to 28.90 Mbps for standard 4G.

BT Mobile Wifi Hotspots

If you thought BT mobile had nothing more to offer apart from its impressive mobile coverage and lightning fast network speeds, you thought wrong. Something else that BT mobile does really well are free WiFi hotspots. BT mobile customers are lucky enough to have access to a network of over 5 million Wifi hotspots around the UK and 13 million outside the UK. You’ll need to download the BT Mobile Wifi app to access these spots.


BT Mobile Coverage and Network Speeds Reviews

Girl with mobile phone

With the best coverage and fastest speeds in the UK, it’s not surprising that in OpenSignals 2018 report, BT was the winner in five out of seven categories for mobile experience. Availability of 4G (coverage) and Download Speed overall were two of the categories that BT mobile excelled in.

Although it’s difficult to find customer reviews on BT’s coverage and network speeds, various UK telecommunications reviews sites have normally rated them 4 out of 5 stars as a mobile network. Knowing that their coverage and speeds are exceptional, it seems as though other areas could be dragging them down.

Overall, BT mobile coverage is impressive. The have faster network speeds than any other provider, they cover 99% of the UK and customers can access a 4G signal 78% of the time, which might not seem all that great but, it’s still better than its competitors.

Pros & Cons: Coverage and network speeds
Pros
Cons
Fastest network speeds out of all competitors
Coverage can be affected by building materials, trees and weather conditions
Need to pay extra for Extra Speed 4G
Piggybacks off the fastest mobile network in the UK (EE)
Excellent 4G coverage
If EE experiences a problem, BT customers will also suffer