Mobile Bench Mark

10:30 AM -- As some companies waffle on about hyperconnectivity and the possibilities of 3G and even 4G wireless technologies, spare a thought for the 200 residents of East Prawle, Devon, in Southwest England, who can only make a mobile phone call if their handset is about eight feet off the ground.

British newspaper The Guardian reports how residents of the tiny English village have been forced to stand on a public bench to get a connection to the nearest mobile base station, operated by Orange UK , situated more than two miles away.

One resident told The Guardian: "It is a bit a embarrassing for people to have to climb on to a park bench, but it's the only way. You have to move very slowly and face in the right direction to catch the signal, but once you have got it you can make a call."

But benches are for sitting on –- or sleeping on, if you've indulged in some local ales –- and the volume of dirty and heavy feet have made the bench unfit for its intended use. So the local parish council is to build a special concrete podium for people to stand on while they make their mobile calls.

Ridiculous? Of course. But this is England, where everyday life is peppered with insanity.

Read the full story here.

— Ray Le Maistre, Country Life Editor, Light Reading

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