Within about three years, passengers on the high-speed rail should be able to continue talking on their mobile phones when the train passes through a tunnel, the Department of Posts and Telecommunications (DPT) announced last week.
The department made the announcement during a weekly meeting at the Ministry of Transportation and Communications as part of efforts to gradually improve the quality of electronic communications along the high-speed rail and lines on the Taiwan Railway Administration (TRA).
The project will be executed in stages, the department said.
The department improved the quality of communications at the section between Taipei Railway Station and Shulin (樹林), New Taipei City (新北市), last year.
Between next year and 2013, passengers on the high-speed rail can expect better mobile phone reception when the train passes through tunnels in Taoyuan County, Hsinchu County and Miaoli, including the Hueilong (迴龍), Huko (湖口) and Shenggang (神岡) tunnels.
The last section, between the Changhwa No. 1 Tunnel and the Baguashan (八卦山) Tunnel, will have improved reception by March 2014.
Meanwhile, the department said telecoms operators would install more base stations along the high-speed rail line to improve reception at aboveground sections.
The department said the TRA did not have so many reception issues because the operational speed of its trains was slower than that of the high-speed rail. Nevertheless, the TRA plans to improve reception at the Sandiaoling (三貂嶺) and Caoling (草嶺) tunnels in Yilan County by the end of this year.