The contract, which is granted for 10 years, allows Arqiva access to approximately 15,000 lampposts across the borough, which can be used to place small cell technology to enhance 4G mobile coverage and capacity. In the future, these small cells will be crucial to the delivery of 5G services.
Small Cells are units that can be installed onto street furniture and the sides of buildings to boost mobile capacity in areas where demand is particularly high or existing coverage is poor. They can also be applied inside venues such as shopping centres, where increased footfall puts a strain on existing communications infrastructure.
Small Cell installations can allow people to continue using the connected functions of their smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices without any interruptions.
The contract with Lambeth is Arqiva’s 12th London Borough concession, following similar contract wins in Barnet, Brent, Camden, Hammersmith & Fulham, Haringey, Harrow, Hounslow, Islington, Merton, Richmond upon Thames and Wandsworth. Arqiva also has similar deals in Manchester, Southampton, Colchester, Eastbourne and Medway.
Nicolas Ott, Managing Director of Telecoms & M2M at Arqiva, said: “Today’s consumers and businesses are heavily reliant on a fast, uninterrupted mobile connection – it is a necessity for everyone.
“Building on our strong heritage in this area, Arqiva is delighted to be working with Lambeth Council in leveraging their street infrastructure for the roll-out of small cells on behalf of the mobile operators in the years to come, when and where it will be needed to increase mobile coverage or capacity.
“It will allow Lambeth citizens, consumers, visitors and businesses to be better informed, entertained and connected on-the-go. It is also an integral key step in Arqiva’s strategy to be central to the UK’s telecommunications infrastructure - today in 4G, tomorrow in 5G.”
Cllr Paul McGlone, Lambeth Council Deputy Council Leader, said: “The ability to access 4G has had a massive impact on both individuals and businesses in our borough, opening up a whole new world of opportunities. So I very much welcome this agreement which will boost 4G where demand is particularly high, or where existing coverage is poor.”