O2 Apologizes for Boggy iPhone Service in London

 
 
By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2009-12-29
 
 
 

New York and San Francisco aren't the only cities filled with bandwidth-devouring iPhone users, according to the Financial Times.

On Dec. 29, Ronan Dunne, head of mobile carrier O2, apologized to customers for service issues-such as not being able to place calls-that were caused by enormous demand for data services in England's capital.

"Where we haven't met our own high standards then there's no question, we apologize to customers for that fact," Dunne told the Financial Times. "But it would be wrong to say O2 has failed its customers en masse."

Dunne told FT that O2 is pursuing three fixes for its bandwidth challenges: the installation of 200 additional mobile base stations; the pursuit of software modifications with infrastructure supply partner Nokia Siemens Networks; and working with handset manufacturers such as Apple and Research In Motion to learn about applications that place particularly heavy demands on a network.

In the United States, iPhone provider AT&T has also faced criticism for bogging under precedent-setting demands on its network. On Dec. 28, AT&T even momentarily stopped selling new iPhones to customers in the New York City area, with a customer service representative reportedly telling a reporter at The Consumerist blog, "You don't have enough towers to handle the phone."

On Dec. 13, The New York Times reported that the iPhone's design, and not the AT&T network, may actually be the cause of the service issues, and that AT&T simply wasn't saying so, for fear of alienating its valued partner.

"Too often, Apple gets a free pass from those that only look at the good the company has done, rather than some the poor decisions it has made," eWEEK reported Dec. 14, offering additional reasons for why blame may more properly be placed on Apple than its carrier partners.

Reportedly, O2 customers faced service issues earlier in the year, though Dunne said performance had begun to improve by December.


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