What Network Does Tesco Mobile Use – Best Guide

Tesco Mobile is a mobile virtual network operator that operates in the United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Ireland, and Slovakia. Since it is an MVNO, Tesco Mobile doesn’t own wireless network infrastructure and towers but instead rides along with another network provider. The British retailer Tesco owns Tesco Mobile, and the service provider uses the network of one of the four major UK carriers. This article will mainly discuss what network does Tesco Mobile uses in the UK.

Tesco launched Tesco Mobile back on 29th May 2003. The mobile operator now entirely operates in the United Kingdom. As of earlier 2014, the operator started to provide a 4G service in almost all parts of the UK. In addition, Tesco Mobile provides 5G network coverage in more than sixty significant cities and towns across the country. It is essential to note that Tesco Mobile launched the 5G network in October 2019.

Since the operator is a significant carrier MVNO and leases its towers, Tesco Mobile does not worry about its network infrastructure. With Tesco Mobile, you can get an assurance of extensive 4G coverage, and it was one of the first virtual operators to provide 5G coverage. However, there are some reasons you might need to choose the MVNO over its network provider or any other provider and some reasons you might not need to alongside Tesco mobile wifi booster and extender. Therefore read the rest of the article for a detailed review and overview of the Tesco Mobile network.

What Network Tesco Mobile use in the UK?

Tesco Mobile uses the O2 network to broadcast its cellular signal. Therefore the quality of Tesco Mobile network coverage matches that of O2. In locations on O2 where you get a 5G network with a 5G plan, 4G, and 3G networks, you will also get it on Tesco Mobile. Because the O2 network is the joint-second major network in the UK, this is an incredible thing for Tesco Mobile customers.

Tesco Mobile subscribers will benefit from 95% of 4G indoor premises coverage and 99% of 4G outdoor premises coverage on O2. These two network coverage percentages put O2 joint first with its main competitor, Vodafone. Therefore you can safely conclude that Tesco Mobile subscribers have excellent network coverage.

Geographical landmass coverage is a little problematic as the coverage incorporates all those hard-to-reach locations, and O2 (Tesco Mobile) is lagging slightly on its 4G service delivery across the UK’s geographical landmass. The network ranks third out of four major network operators with 80% network coverage. Tesco Mobile subscribers in rural areas may struggle to get a cell signal with this percentage coverage.

Measures are being taken to improve 4G coverage in these rural locations. Consequently, O2 participates in the Shared Rural Network (SRN) commitments. This step will see all the four major networks invest a total of £532m in improving remote mobile coverage over the next three years. Meanwhile, before the improvement is made, Tesco Mobile customers can purchase the best cell phone booster for rural areas to improve network coverage.

It’s also worth noticing that O2 (Tesco Mobile) have been busy in current years when it comes to expanding its rural network coverage. In 2017, they established that their plans to link over 800 towns and villages in Scotland to the 4G network were undergoing. In 2018, they invested another £45m to connect an additional 339 rural villages to 4G. All these expansions benefit Tesco Mobile as they piggyback on O2.

Does Tesco Mobile have 5G network coverage?

what network does tesco mobile use

Tesco Mobile launched its 5G network service on 3rd March 2020, thus a fourth virtual operator to launch the network. It is an expectation that Tesco Mobile’s 5G coverage will increase. However, even the places with 5G don’t typically have complete coverage, which is true of every network.

Since Tesco Mobile uses O2’s network, the 5G coverage offered by the significant provider will match what’s available as a Tesco Mobile subscriber. Unlike some virtual network operators, Tesco Mobile charges different prices for their 5G deals than their 4G deals.

Up to now, O2 (Tesco Mobile) has rolled out their 5G network mobile service to over one hundred and fifty towns and cities across the United Kingdom. That indicates a considerable leap from their previous figures released in October 2020, where only 108 towns and cities had 5G coverage.

You need to have a 5G cellphone and plan to take advantage of the 5G network. However, Tesco Mobile offers both the plan and phones like the iPhone 13, Samsung Galaxy A71, and Samsung Galaxy S21, among many others. Therefore, it is vital getting on board, as 5G network is far faster than 4G.

What are Tesco Mobile network speeds and frequencies?

Consider how O2 download/upload speeds and latency compare with other major providers according to the OpenSignal report of September 2021.

  • EE- 44/9.7Mbps, 36.0ms
  • Three- 25.2/6.3Mbps, 48.3ms
  • Vodafone-  21.6/7.4Mbps, 39.0ms
  • O2 (Tesco Mobile) – 17.1/5.4Mbps, 38.1ms

From the report, the researcher found O2 (Tesco Mobile) to have average download and upload speeds of 17.1Mbps and 5.4Mbps, respectively. Both the speeds are slower than any significant rival; thus, you can expect Tesco Mobile to be similarly slow. However, the speeds are still fast enough to do most things you might want on a cellphone contentedly.

The MVNO uses the 2300MHz, 2100MHz, 1800MHz, and 800MHz bands for the 4G network. The 800MHz band is a long-range band, traveling long distances between towers, but it’s also capable of passing through the thick walls of buildings. Those two features combine to make it best for urban and rural locations. Most portable cell phone signal boosters for hiking will amplify signals from these bands. 

The 2300MHz band is a short-range band best for busy areas, while the 1800MHz and 2100MHz bands are middle-capability ones. For the 5G network, Tesco Mobile uses the short-range 3400MHz and 3600MHz bands to cope with many connections. The 700MHz band is a low-frequency and long-range network band for 5G, 4G, or both networks.

How to improve a Tesco Mobile no or poor cell signal

Are you exhausted of Tesco Mobile no or poor signal? Do not panic anymore. Check out our tips and tricks on how to overcome these problems. You can use the tips to boost cell signals at home for free.

i) Shift to a different place in your house

Network coverage in your house can be uneven. Direct orientation of some rooms in your house to the direction of Tesco Mobile tower makes them have better signal. Therefore, if you experience any cell signal problems, you should move to these rooms to avoid dropped calls and slow internet connections.

ii) Switch Network settings

If you experience slow data connection on 5G and 4G networks, you can switch to the 3G network, which might be less busy. Switching to the 3G network may lead to improved network coverage.

iii) Remove any obstacles interfering with cell signal.

Obstacles can block signals from the nearest cell tower from reaching your phone. Removing the obstacles will ensure that signals from the nearest cell tower reach your phone seamlessly, thus improving network coverage. In addition, you get rid of internal interference coming from electronics and metallic objects for adequate signal reception.

iv) Switch your  cellphone off and then on

Quite often, such a simple move works. If you still have a Tesco Mobile poor network coverage after doing it, try other tips.

v) Purchase a reliable Tesco Mobile signal booster

A Tesco Mobile signal booster, also known as an internet booster, is a designed device that makes the network signal stronger, eliminating dropped calls, unsent text messages, and slow internet speeds. It will improve the network coverage in your home and office for sure!

But how does an internet booster work? The working principle of this device is simple. The device has two antennae, indoor and outdoor antennas, and a booster box. The outdoor antenna catches a weak Tesco Mobile existing cell signal and passes it through special cables to the booster box.

At the booster box, the weak signal is strengthened and amplified with the help of amplifiers. The indoor antenna rebroadcasts your wireless device the amplified and robust signal. 

There are signal boosters that operate at different frequency bands. Therefore, the best signal booster models can improve the cell signal of the 5G, 4G, 3G, 2G, and GSM networks. However, some booster models can be designed to boost all types of cell signals simultaneously.

Bottom line 

Tesco Mobile is a Mobile Virtual Network Operator operating in the United Kingdom. Since it is an MVNO, it leases its network from O2. The Tesco Mobile network coverage is excellent since O2 is one of the UK’s best indoor 4G coverage networks.

While O2’s coverage is best in urban areas, its network coverage in rural areas slightly lags. Therefore, Tesco Mobile customers can purchase signal boosters to improve network coverage in those areas.