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What is GSM-R?

GSM-R is the unique mobile communications network for all rail-associated businesses.

The national GSM-R network is an outstanding infrastructure for offering railway-specific communications services with good quality and high reliability.  The GSM-R network in the Netherlands offers radio coverage along all railway lines and is primarily used for communications between engineers and traffic control.   At the same time, the GSM-R network serves as a carrier for the ETCS train safety system.


GSM-R is able to offer more functionality than the public GSM networks, such as group calls, priority calls, functional addressing and location-dependent addressing.  GSM-R is suitable for both voice and data (SMS, GSM-data, GPRS). Moreover, GSM-R offers a very reliable and attractive alternative for the walkie-talkie function.


What are the unique characteristics of GSM-R?

  • Rapid connection building;
  • Emergency calling;
  • Multiple call priorities;
  • Group communication (broadcast);
  • Guaranteed coverage along all railway lines (including railway tunnels);
  • Very high reliability thanks to a network design customised for railway safety and carrier requirements.
  • The network is monitored 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with pro-active administration and troubleshooting;
  • A very high Service Level Agreement with functions back online within 4 hours;
  • The network has many functions (e.g. location-dependent addressing, functional numbering, group communication, etc.) that can be used in peripherals and/or applications;


GSM-R services guarantee high safety for man and material!