More than two million O2 customers were left without connectivity after last Friday’s nationwide outage. This time the misery for many lasted the best part of four days, making another dent in O2’s reputation as a reliable network. Is there no end to the misery for O2 customers? And to top it all, it has been made clear there will be no compensation.
The latest outage – or should I say outrage – comes only three months after the last one when more than eight million customers were left without connectivity for the best part of three days. And prior to that a smaller outage in June also affected thousands of people. The misery for these consumers appears to be relentless. It will be interesting to see how O2 fares in the next Ofcom telco complaints report. Can it really retain its title of the least complained-about network?
What brings O2’s failing into even sharper focus is that the outage comes during a time when the industry has been galvanised by the progress in bringing 4G services to customers. When the industry is abuzz with talk of customers enjoying potential fast speeds, O2’s difficulty in even getting a 2G service must be of acute embarrassment.
Let’s not forget that rival operator EE is set to launch its 4G service at the end of this month. Investment must be key in ensuring that O2’s problems are not repeated and its infrastructure is kept in mint condition. Otherwise those coming to the end of their contract with O2 will seriously consider their options as they decide whether they want to stay with the network.
Judging by the comments left on our website, this could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back in terms of customers’ patience. And many customers will express their disappointment with their feet. Check out www.mobiletoday.co.uk to read the hundreds of comments we have received. After the last outage we received more than 1,000 comments from disgruntled customers.
So, although the apology from O2 is welcomed, it is not enough – there needs to be a guarantee that these problems do not recur, otherwise the damage to the network’s reputation will be irreparable.
Editor: Shujaul Azam