Ayrat Khayrillin: ‘Tatarstan doesn’t have communication problems, there are local issues’

The republic’s Ministry of Digitalisation summarised its performance for 9 months and set key priorities

The Tatarstan Ministry of Digitalisation had a session to summarise its performance for 9 months this year dedicated to the quality of phone reception in the republic. As it turned out, the mobile network coverage in the republic totals 99,8%, however, there are still “white spots” in some settlements and on highways. There is still no mobile phone reception particularly in 22 settlements of Tatarstan (1,067 people). Realnoe Vremya found out why.

Phone coverage as indicator of quality of life

The session of the Ministry of Digitalisation of the Republic of Tatarstan dedicated to the quality of coverage in the republic took place at Kazan IT Park. Vice Minister Albert Yakovlev made the main report summarising the performance of the ministry for 9 months in 2019. His boss talked about the performance a bit later.

As the speaker said, the number of active mobile network users in Tatarstan had increased by 3,1% and totalled 7,4 million people. The number of people actively using the mobile Internet also augmented — by 11,2% — and amounted to 3,8 million people.

“The high mobile network coverage in the city is one of the most perceptible indicators of the quality of life. Citizens and the city’s guests’ impression of Kazan also depends on the quality of signal,” Albert Yakovlev gave a speech. “An emergency response centre was created in the ministry, it weekly holds sessions about the quality of the mobile phone signal, and the causes of communication problems in Kazan were already found.”

According to the vice minister, protected areas of cultural heritage sites as well as the land leasing rate are the main causes. The case is that according to legislation it is prohibited to place cell towers in the centre of Kazan and on some other territories.

As for the second problem, which is the land leasing rate to place the stands, here the Tatarstan ministry of digitalisation works with the Executive Committee of Kazan and Tatarstan Ministry of Land Property to make the pricing more transparent.

White spots

Mobile network coverage along federal highways and railways is another pain in the neck for the republican ministry. The measurements taken by the response centre of the Tatarstan Ministry of Digitalisation showed that Vympelkom (12 km) and T2 Mobile (10 km) had the longest area without reception on M7 highway. TMT operator gave way on the highway Kazan — Orenburg (7,5 km), while MTS and TMT companies have white spots on the highway Kazan — Ulyanovsk — 1,6 km.

“As not all mobile network operators have plans to get rid of the white spots on roads, the Tatarstan Ministry of Digitalisation sent letters to the companies’ headquarters requesting to include the determined troubled sections in investment plans to develop networks,” Albert Yakovlev claimed.

It also became known from the vice minister of digital development of public administration, information technologies and communications of Tatarstan’s report that the network coverage in the republic is 99,8%. Moreover, there is still no mobile network in 22 settlements (1,067 people) of Tatarstan.

“Novoye Yamkino, Polyanka, Sosnovka, Glazovo, Dusay, Tyuryush and other villages are among these settlements. I would like to address the mobile operators. It is your users, our compatriots. No matter how hard it is, it is necessary to provide these zones with a mobile network,” the functionary delivered a speech. “Apart from this, 107 settlements in Tatarstan (3,097 people) in Tatarstan are covered only by one mobile operator.

To resolve and move forward

Summing up the performance for 9 months this year, the Tatarstan Ministry of Digitalisation also analysed complaints about the quality of mobile network services: if last year the number of requests was 334, in 2019 it rose to 390.

As for landline phone services, the number of complaints notably reduced this year, while the amount of requests with problems with the Internet went up and reached 52 (to compare, there were just 37 complaints last year).

“Tatarstan doesn’t have communication problems, there are sites, local issues that we should resolve and move forward to new technologies that are already on the threshold of our economy,” Minister of Digital Development of Public Administration, Information Technologies and Communications Of Tatarstan Ayrat Khayrullin concluded the session.

After that, the participants of the session unanimously voted for the solution that will be the foundation for the ministry’s work.

By Lina Sarimova. Photo: digital.tatarstan.ru

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