it got me, but it's back now
British mobile network Three is having data issues this morning, cutting its subscribers off from the internet. Despite having no access to the web, frustrated users still managed to tweet about how annoyed they were to be kicked offline: This AM @ThreeUK rolled out their new 0G internet to a few thousand London customers. …
Heh. I thought it was me. I flashed my phone this morning with a new firmware. I didnt wipe the phone though just the caches. I wondered why I had no mobile internet and spent an hour faffing with APNs. A few reboots later and it started working.
Seems it wasnt me afterall!
Things go wrong, half a day or a full one can be a pain in the arse, but seriously? How many people were really affected by it? By affecting, I don't mean unable to tweet - which they managed anyway, I am talking about serious stuff...
There are cases of compensation because people trip in their own shoe laces now. Could this be a new reason for litigation soon?
"I couldn't instagram my breakfast this morning, all my friends started tweeting pictures of flowers with BEST CONDULENSIS LOLZ!!!1!! captions because they could only assume I was dead".
Only affected in the fact that I couldn't retrieve the emails I needed for his morning's meeting.
Don't have a company provided phone/laptop, so am not allowed access to their wifi. Best they can offer is Outlook Web Access over the internet.
Was only an issue for 30 minutes though, as I just used one of the other attendees computers to log into my email and get the data that way.
Errr, so the problem here lies with your company. If you can't get those notes for your meeting, you tell them its because they don't let you get on their wifi and the system they do offer is unreliable, so here is the business cost of that.
Mine - in West London - was off from about 8am to 11am.
All working normally now (i.e. 2-3 bars and 3Mbps download on speedtest, but less when actually downloading a file).
Contract ends in a few days, so might have to see what Three are offering, as a quick look on their website seems to show my current One Plan tariff has gone up 30% (currently £36/month, new plan is £46/month)!
Indeed, also includes virtually unlimited calls + texts, internet and tethering. 12 month plan though.
Those phone subsidies don't come cheap. Get yourself a 5S for £41/month and £99 down upfront and you're looking at £1083 for a locked phone and 2 years tie in.
Get the sim only deal for £15 a month (over 24 months) and the unlocked phone and you're looking at £909, a fairly hefty £174 saving. Savings get even bigger with the 64GB model, which is £240 more expensive over the contract period, but £160 more expensive direct from Apple, giving a saving of £254.
This isn't really rocket science is it, doesn't everyone know that, for example, buying a car in cash is cheaper than getting a loan? It is the same principle, the £174 is basically the interest they charge on loaning you the money to own the phone sooner than you would if you had the cash in hand.
I used to be on that deal but am going to switch to PAYG on orange. I found I am rarely using over 1gb a month so the £10 a month pays nicely for 1gb - you still get minutes per month and the £10 is also credit for other stuff.
Not sure what orange signal is like yet though.
It meant I couldn't read my work email on the way to work and couldn't read some web pages I wanted to (not for work). Not entirely happy...
But it's fairly reliable normally. I've had few problems over the last two years.
A short outage every year... ok...no big deal.
If this happened several times a year I'd be unhappy. But it hasn't.
At home in Hampshire (and more generally in populous areas outside of London) I typically get >= 12 Mbps from Three regularly. In the square mile, South Bank, Oxford St etc this often drops to < 0.75 Mbps and is barely useable (lots of timeouts etc). So as far as I'm concerned the lack of t'interwebs in London is business as usual
That is london for you, depending where you are you'll get amazing speeds or next to nothing, and that goes for all networks, not just three, actually I find three one of the best in london, yet vodafone I had to drop back to 2g to even get my emails most of the time!
> Given that your phone has to register with a cell tower, I wonder why they couldn't send you a text telling you that there is a problem when you enter the affected area?
Because your phone doesn't have to register with an individual tower if it's not doing anything. Instead it registers on the Location or Routeing Area, which can be a large collection of towers covering a reasonably large geographical area. In theory you could still probably do something, but it wouldn't be that cheap to implement on the expensive big boxes in the middle of their network.
In terms of "having a strong signal, but no data", basically it means that the 2G side of things was probably working fine - so making calls may have been perfectly OK (I don't know, and the article doesn't say). But as 3 piggyback on 2G networks (I forget whose) and have their own 3G network, it's not that much of a surprise that if their 3G network falls over all the impacted subscribers can still fall back onto the 2G network.
They used to piggyback on one of the other services early in their corporate life, but I recall reading of the termination of their 2G contract. Oddly enough, it was about the time when my mobile service at home went from "OK everywhere in the house" to "barely passable, make calls upstairs".
Only reason I stuck with them as long as I did was they were the only ones offering unlimited 3G data at the time of my last contract renewal...
Well, nothing in my life is that important that it can't wait a while...no life or death decisions nor contractual financial penalties. News, info....well there isn't much going on that effects folk is there that can't wait a bit.
Traffic jams happen, getting late in for work happens. Enjoy loking at the outside world. You never know, you may see something new.
Don't read anything work related when out of work - I'm not getting paid then!
Having a break from 'instant communication' can be a blessing.
Oh, and no impact here in the West Midlands
Fortunately I'm not having issues - I'm in a relatively remote area today and normally it's a bit hit and miss here for any network, but oddly my 3 service is going great guns today and giving me plenty of data and speed even with the faintest bit of signal.
So if you could all keep off the interwebs I'm doing good ta.
Struggled to get mobile data access til about 11am-ish. It's a shame that the outage was not mentioned on three's site alongside their planned maintenance section which simply stated 'no planned maintenance in your area' (or thereabouts). Is it difficult to keep users informed?
Could be unrelated, but I had no web email or play store around 6:30pm in the City and outward toward Essex on the Train.
I thought, this remeinds me of what sometimes happens on Wifi with my BT homehub3
So I switched my mobile data of and then on again - and all was well again
The comment about tweeting cat pictures instead of fixing the issue is nonsense, or does the guy/girl really think the person doing the tweeting is the engineer fixing the problem? Other parts of a business do carry on running as normal you know, even if the engineers are flat out trying to fix something.
"Despite having no access to the web, frustrated users still managed to tweet about how annoyed they were to be kicked offline:"
Err, Twitter is available from more than just phones. Like a good old fashioned PC or Mac connected to a wire.
Or by SMS if you've set it up, and SMS was still working.
Affected me in the north of Scotland.
Was a real pain too as I discovered that a major road was blocked due to flooding and I had to take a huge detour. Using Waze as sat-nav works great... except when no signal. Google maps no good either! Also I discovered I didn't have the phone number of the person I was due to see and no way to search for it.
We really are too reliant on modern tech!
It was out, for me, from 7am to 11.30 across a network spanning > 90 miles both in London and out into North Essex / Suffolk. Three customer service is very poor. Not least a simple page saying there was an outage and providing an update would be nice. I don't really want to have to keep going to Twitter and searching for @ThreeUKSupport just to find out everyone else is affected. And to answer some questions raised, phone services were working, just not Internet access - so a simple text would have been enough to calm it all down...they seem to be able to send a text when they want to sell me something...
I have to say Three have been the most reliable network I've been on - and I've used them all (whether personal or company phone). Hassle free on my personal phone for a good 6 years now.
Data is, bar none, the fastest there is on mobile - well maybe except EE 4G now, but coverage is limited and speeds aren't THAT impressive in metropolitan areas.
My friends, by comparison, have chopped and changed networks with each phone they get, constantly whinging about speed, coverage and downtime. That was till I convinced them to go to Three.
Ok grovelling over.
I'm so angry.... my internet goes down for nearly 3 hours, this isn't good enough! This is just the icing on the cake of no issues in the last 5 years that makes me want to leave 3.
On no! Wait a minute, 3 hours downtimes in 5 years, and it wasn't even that bad as it was just my data that didn't work for 3 hours (I could still call and txt). Heck I think I might just stay a loyal 3 customer, especially when they've rolled out that free 4g update across the UK.
Phew, lucky I didn't do an el reg bitch fit and insta quit and flame 3 for their cheap and cheerful service.
...The first outage I can remember since I moved to them in 2010. However all is forgiven after I used 1.5GB of data in the states last week without any incurring any costs above my normal £15 monthly payment for The One Plan.
To put it in context my colleagues on O2 would have been charged £9216 for the same amount of data!
Interesting article - customer experience management should be considered at every step of the process for CSPs to achieve the promise of ‘anytime, anywhere’. Some, however, are clearly on the back foot and struggling - as we can see from the power of a tweet. Customers will not put up with poor service and telcos must do better: experience, experience, experience.
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