Published: Sun, December 09, 2018
Electronics | By Shannon Stone

O2 will give millions of customers compensation after mobile network outage

O2 will give millions of customers compensation after mobile network outage

Pay as you go customers will get a 10% credit when topping-up in the new year - 02 will let notify when it is available.

SoftBank said earlier the outages stemmed from problems at exchanges for its high-speed wireless LTE network - known as 4G.

Guidance from regulator Ofcom said that, depending on circumstances, it "may be appropriate" for mobile networks to offer some form of compensation for loss of service.

As the inquest into what happens begins, O2 and Ericsson which provides the software at the heart of the problem have issued joint apologies, but is still leaving customers guessing about compensation, for the moment.

"The bigger issue here is that mobile carriers all over the world, including in Great Britain and in Japan, are all running some of the software in question, with control over the maintenance of this proprietary software completely in the hands of a single vendor, in this case, Ericsson".

Customers of O2, Giffgaff, Tesco Mobile and Sky Mobile were hit by the outage on Thursday that also left many unable to make or receive phone calls.

Ofcom has approved two ADR schemes for mobile phone service fault and problems - CISAS and Ombudsman Services: Communications.

"We're very sorry for Thursday's network issues".

"I want to let our customers know how sorry I am for the impact our network data issue has had on them, and reassure them that our teams, together with Ericsson, are doing everything we can", said Mark Evans, CEO, Telefonica (O2) United Kingdom on Thursday.

"During December 6, 2018, Ericsson has identified an issue in certain nodes in the core network resulting in network disturbances for a limited number of customers in multiple countries using two specific software versions of the SGSN-MME (Serving GPRS Support Node - Mobility Management Entity)", said Ericsson's press release. We have been working hard on resolving the United Kingdom data issue since early this morning.

Börje Ekholm, Ericsson's President and CEO added that "The faulty software that has caused these issues is being decommissioned and we apologize not only to our customers but also to their customers".

She added: "The software is likely not open source, therefore, nobody other than Ericsson themselves was likely to be aware of it".

The network operator said it restored its 3G data service by around 9.30pm last night, and said this morning that the 4G service has also started working again.

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