What is a mobile signal booster and are they legal to use in the UK?

Good news, Boost Pro technology is fully legal and license exempt in the UK. Our products are fully compliant with Ofcom Si 2018/399. You can read more information about Ofcom’s guidance here. Please note that many companies offer mobile signal repeating products which are illegal to use (just not to sell – more on that below). Use of such products can carry large fines for individuals and businesses, so be sure to read on for further information about the use of mobile repeaters, how the technology works, and how to stay lawful.

How do mobile repeaters work?

Mobile signal repeaters are used for improving mobile signal within buildings with poor coverage. Boost Pro technology is made up of three units: firstly, an External Antenna which is installed in the area with the strongest possible signal from the mobile network operator, usually on the building’s exterior. This is then connected to a Network Unit, located internally, which is the hub of the system. Coverage Units are then connected to the Network Unit and strategically placed throughout the building to dissipate the mobile signal, enabling a greatly improved LTE voice and data coverage.

What technologies and networks are supported by Boost Pro mobile repeaters?

Technologies supported are 3G(UMTS/WCDMA), 4G (HSPA/HSPA+) and LTE. We work with all major networks – EE, Vodafone, O2, Three and all major UK MVNO’s included. Please note that a signal booster is required for each individual network, however they can be reconfigured to alternate between networks at any given time.

How do you stay compliant with Ofcom?

Ofcom states that: “Repeater devices transmit or re-transmit in the cellular frequency bands. Only the mobile network operators are licensed to use equipment that transmits in these bands. Installation or use of repeater devices by anyone without a licence is a criminal offence under Section 8 of the WT Act 2006. Any person found guilty of installing or using such devices without a licence would be liable on conviction to a fine of up to £5000 and/or up to 51 weeks’ imprisonment (Six months in Scotland and Northern Ireland)…In the UK the use of any radio transmitting device is required to be either licensed or specifically exempted from licensing under the Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006 (WT Act 2006). For mobile telephones, the use of the spectrum by the network operators is licensed to cover the use of transmitters and repeaters, while user devices (i.e. handsets) are covered by a general exemption.”

This effectively means that as long as mobile signal boosting devices do not interfere with other networks and respect the licensing conditions of the mobile network operator (i.e. can be controlled by the mobile network), without causing harm to any other networks, then they are compliant.

Rest assured that Boost Pro is a state of the art technology which does not interfere with other wireless networks, and is preconfigured to work directly with the chosen mobile network operator.

A word of warning about other mobile signal boosting products

There is a loophole in Ofcom’s policies which means that it is not illegal to sell unlicensed mobile signal boosters (hence why a quick Google search leads to thousands of low-cost results), however it is entirely illegal to use such products – the end user will ultimately be held responsible for paying the hefty fines.

Want to know more?

If you have any questions or want to know more about how the technology might help boost mobile signal for voice and data within your organisation’s buildings, please get in touch. Boost Pro has installed mobile repeaters for large public and private sector organisations across multiple sectors – you can view our case studies here.

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