SARAH WHYTE September 08, 2012
Customers of the mobile phone company Vodafone were left reeling today when parts of its network service collapsed this afternoon.
The Vodafone website stated that customers living in NSW were experiencing "issues accessing 2G voice services and 3G voice and data" and that Vodafone was "working to resolve" the issue.
The network's free customer-service line had a 30-minute waiting period for customers wanting to talk to a Vodafone spokesperson.
By 6.30pm tonight the customer line had been closed. However, a Vodafone spokesman said the outstanding fault on the 2G network was resolved about 9.30pm and normal services in all areas were being restored.
Vodafone's Twitter feed was inundated with customers trying to access data and to receive and make voice calls from their mobile phones.
A customer of Vodafone, Mohammad Tariq, 51, said a member of the Vodafone technical service team had told him the whole NSW network had gone down and that they didn't know when it would go up again.
"I have got seven Vodafone mobiles in my family," the father of two from Kellyville said. "I have had no phone messages, calls or data," he said.
"I believe Vodafone is failing in their duty of care and they not are providing the service they have agreed to in the contract. This is not what customers should expect," Mr Tariq, who owns a Nokia phone, said.
Another customer, Sarah Brown, 23, said her Samsung phone stopped working completely today at noon. "I have had no reception. I had to take the battery out," Ms Brown from Darlinghurst said.
This is not the first time Vodafone customers have been left without adequate coverage. In late 2010, thousands of customers complained en masse about drop-outs, poor reception and capacity problems.
The company has lost 600,000 customers since mid-2010, The Sydney Morning Herald reported last month.
"Vodafone experienced a software fault at approximately 1.30pm on Saturday, 8 September, affecting services to customers in some parts of Sydney and the Sutherland Shire and some parts Western and South-Western NSW.
"Vodafone engineers immediately responded, and restored data services to customers who are using 3G mobile phones at around 3.30pm today. 3G voice services have been operating as normal and were unaffected by the fault.
"Engineers have identified one remaining fault and are working to restore services to customers with 2G handsets in affected areas as soon as possible. We apologise unreservedly to customers who have been inconvenience by this disruption to their mobile service."