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London scraps plans for cellular coverage on the tube, bums Huawei out

Vlad Savov
April 1, 2011
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Technical complexity and financial naiveté have meant that London's ambitious plans to cover its underground train network with cellular signal by the 2012 Olympics are hitting the scrapheap. In spite of Huawei's most generous offer to provide £50 million ($81m) of equipment for the project for free, the London Mayor's wish that UK mobile operators be the ones to foot the installation bill -- without a penny coming out of public coffers -- has unsurprisingly found little favor. Compounded with the logistical hellride of trying to get everything up and running by next summer, that's now led to a mutual agreement among all parties concerned to abandon the project. Mind you, the plans to get WiFi up at 120 stations in time for the Olympics are still on track, so at least we'll be able to pull down some data before diving into those dark, damp tunnels.

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