Latest network outage ups stakes for O2

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The operator’s image has taken another hit and with it set to manage network equipment across half the country for Vodafone, it’s not just its reputation on the line 

Much as O2 has to tried to play down its latest outage – saying the problem was fixed within four hours – the fact remains that some customers were without a reliable signal for four days.

It doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in a network which cut off a third of its customers for a day just three months ago.

This time “only 10 per cent of customers” were left with no data, text or call allowances, however, the negative headlines will only serve to remind the other 90 per cent – and any potential customers – that O2’s service may not be as reliable as it once was.

O2 promotes itself as a premium brand and that often comes with a premium price tag, but this latest problem must place a question mark over these perceptions in the minds of its loyal customers.

The outage will do little to restore people’s trust and confidence in the brand, which its CEO Ronan Dunne (pictured) said was so vital to the company in the wake of the July problems.

Back in August Dunne said O2 would leave “no stone unturned” to avoid a repeat of the problem. The latest problems would suggest some stones were ignored. O2 insists the latest outage is not related to the same one in July.That’s all well and good, but the customer doesn’t care – their phone either works or it doesn’t.

Customers were quick to vent their frustration on O2’s Facebook page – 3,500 comments were posted. As in July, many threatened to leave and said they regretted giving the operator the benefit of the doubt previously. With no compensation on o er this time, their patience may have been stretched too far.

It seems O2’s network is feeling the strain and given it will soon be managing the network equipment for Vodafone across half the country, it’s not just its own reputation on the line.

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