by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
3g, speed cap, uk

3 uk, o2

Why Offer 3G Service At All If You Limit Speeds To Less Than 2.5G?

from the please-'splain-it-to-us-tech-nerds dept

You have to hand it to those UK mobile operators and their disdain for their own customers' wishes. Remember how a top exec at 3 UK once declared that customers were "nuts" if they wanted to be able to access the full internet from their mobile phones (rather than the extremely limited selection of content chosen and gated by 3 UK). Eventually 3 realized that it was wrong and its customers weren't nuts, but it would appear that 3's competitor O2 is equally anti-customer. Apparently, the company has recently put a cap on its downstream 3G speeds at 128k. This is for their 3G service -- you know, the one that mobile operators had promised would bring "broadband" speeds wirelessly. Even worse, it appears that this 128k is even slower than its 2.5G EDGE network. As for how the company feels about its customers -- it may not have called them "nuts" but it came close. PR folks from the company accidentally called a reporter while talking about how to "position" this story, claiming that it was only "techie nerds" who cared about this sort of thing. I imagine that O2 may discover that it has a lot more "techie nerds" as customers than it thought -- and they'll look for opportunities to support other providers.

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  • identicon
    Jake, 11 Apr 2008 @ 2:48pm

    Having found myself dependent on the GPRS functions of a RAZR for checking my email for nearly a month over the summer, for reasons too involved to be worth going into here, I have to say I can see where that 3 executive is coming from. Still, I don't give it long before the Advertising Standards Agency weighs in on this.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Apr 2008 @ 4:02pm

    That must be great...

    ...When you're a reporter, and somebody accidentally dials your number and starts blabbing. I can just imagine the reporter frantically scribbling notes, nodding occasionally... "Yep... Uh-Huh... right... mmm...."

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Dave Beck, 12 Apr 2008 @ 2:47am

      Re: That must be great...

      The reporter was to join a conference call with O2 but the reporter conferenced into the call early while the O2 PR folks were still discussing strategy, and too stupid to mute the phone.

      I've done the same thing with company conference calls and certainly heard stuff the other end did not want me to hear. In those cases it just gave me a negotiating advantage over people who deserved it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    inc, 12 Apr 2008 @ 7:01am

    sounds like familiar... I wonder if comcast execs are in the UK?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    alaric, 14 Apr 2008 @ 6:36am

    Probably a Network Reason for this

    Might not have that much capacity in the 3G network just yet. Maybe backhaul is an issue.

    Its still bad marketing but there could be a perfectly good technology reason for it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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