back to article Vodafone emboldened by Orange's BlackBerry Bold woes

Vodafone has told its third-party sales partners to use the "software issues and technical faults" it claims forced Orange to stop selling the new BlackBerry Bold to persuade consumers it has a better 3G network than its rival does. Those faults, Vodafone alleges in an confidential memo seen by Register Hardware, centre on " …


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  1. hey_may
    Paris Hilton

    Mud sticks

    So from this point forth sales persons across the land will be referring to "Orange's technical issues"

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    What a laugh!

    Vodafone have some cheek spinning their 3G network as a selling point with the Bold! I have had a Voda UK Bold for 4 weeks now. I have to leave it in 2G mode to reliably receive emails and for phone calls. When left with 2G and 3G, my Bold stops synchronising when on 3G, and calls drop out quite often.

    The Vodafone UK forums are full of people with the same complaints. I notice that Vodafone UK quietly snuck out a firmware update for the Bold in the last couple of days, matching Orange's release firmware. Unfortunately it does NOT solve the issues with 3G (I've been using the Vodafone Germany firmware update for a week now).

    Blame can be apportioned equally between the providers and RIM - the Bold is still not ready for release, but they pushed it out the door anyway. I can imagine the Storm is going to be as bad on release next month.

  3. Anonymous Coward


    When I spoke to Orange last week, a very helpful and candid chap told me that when Orange are saying that the minority of their users are affected "take it from me, that means the majority or all of them". Apparently it's a massive problem. That in this day and age a phone can be released to market that actually just doesn't work is amazing. In 3G mode, it can't hand over properly. I mean isn't there a standard for these things. My 3G signal goes from full to nothing while remaining motionless! Is 3G actually ready? What's the point in 3G - all it seems to do is drain my battery about as fast as if I just shorted the damn thing and cause my calls to get cut off. Oh and download stuff faster with massive latency.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I thought they are sharing sites

    IIRC Voda and Orange are sharing the 3G infra as per the latest loosening of "buildout requirements" by OfCom. So Voda saying that Orange network sucks means that its own network sucks bricks through a straw sidewise as well.

    That is the case anyway. There is no coverage on half of the London-Cambridge route. Same for London-Glagow and many other places.

  5. Mark Lockwood


    "That in this day and age a phone can be released to market that actually just doesn't work is amazing"


  6. Ryan Clark
    Thumb Down


    Where I live I can't even get reliable orange coverage at all, despite living in the centre of england. Only Vodafone and o2 work here. There is also no orange signal at one of our largest clients so in the two places I am most likely to need to use my phone it doesn't work.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    I'd never buy a phone

    Where at least service pack 1 hasn't been released,

    and to be honest now a days I'm moving toward waiting for Service Pack 2.

    Of course if it ran Linux Distribution Alpha Galactic 9 there would be no problem.

    I for one welcome our small unreliable blackberry coloured friends.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Funny that

    As Vodafone can't even get a 2g / mobile signal in my building. Yet all the other operators can. Apparently was going to cost £50K + to get a signal in..

  9. Peter

    Shared 3G network

    Wait a minute, don't Orange and Vodafone have a shared 3G network?!!

  10. Anonymous Coward

    damm sales rubbish

    3G is inherently more complex and when issues do occur it can be harder not necessarily easier to find and fix them than with 2G. Couple that with all the circuit to IP migration that was, is and will be going on. Leads to the vendor relationship becoming potentially more important. The fact that Voda have worked closer with RIM on the 9000 series may pay off.

    RIM have never had much luck with WCDMA chips though, the 8707 and Bold have both had issues. Twin this was poor customer education on 3G (your never going to get a sales rep saying, well to be honest the new RSJ in your living room will probably fook the 2100 propagation) and you can see some of the reasons why 3G hasn't been as successful as it was predicated to be.

    Hopefully easier software upgrading (maybe OTA) could lead to easier paths for resolving these problems.

    @AC (Minority): Bit of a sweeping statement, 3G handovers aren't that bad. True there's a few many factors in play sometimes and it's not perfect but it's a damm sight better than 2G for many applications. Just turn it off when your travelling at any speed, are rural or same as you would with WiFi on a laptop and don't require it at all.

  11. Anonymous Coward

    orange 3G - an oxymoron?

    I don't have a bold, but my LG rarely ever works on 3G.

    I ave to have it set to 1900/800, or the signal strength is weak especially indoors and the call quality is bad.

    And its not like I live in the back of beyond, were talking SW London and Fleet Street as rule!

  12. Monkey

    Orange problems must be sporadic

    Or at least confined to certain batches (all be it really large ones!), because I've had no problems with my Bold and the 3g handover, and neither have the 100 or so users in the organisation I work in.

    Not that I'm questioning the fact that the issue is there.

    Vodafone are been really hypocritical though! Not only do they share the same 3g network as Orange as others state, but they stopped quality testing mobiles before releasing them years ago. Which has lead to some real problems with return rates the last 18 months on certain high profile handsets.

    Orange have cut back dramatically on pre-release phone testing and they have been stung so it seems.

  13. Peter Best
    Thumb Up

    I thought they are sharing sites?

    Nah, that all fell through guys. All VF are doing now is a low level site share where we'll get the option to install our equipment in Orange's cabins and vice versa.

    Everyone with coverage problems on 3G, make sure you report it to customer services, as the rollout budget is quite high at the moment, so you might sway a decision to get a new BTS installed.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    VF + Orange sit e sharing

    "Vodafone are been really hypocritical though! Not only do they share the same 3g network as Orange as others state, but they stopped quality testing mobiles before releasing them years ago."

    Complete rubbish. The networks aren't shared at all, and mobiles are still quality tested, the team had a few redundancies, but they're still there doing their thing.

    Please don't comment with such authority on subjects you clearly have no knowledge of.

  15. Monkey


    In regard to the testing, I know a thing or two and I know I'm not talking complete rubbish. ALL the carriers are guilty of letting seriously flawed phones go out to consumers on a regular basis. Vodafone just as much as others.

    The comment was over emphasised yes, a result of it been typed and fired off in haste, but there are plenty of facts behind it. VF's approach to phone quality testing on all but their highest profile exclusives is shocking. Just like all of them. Orange used to test virtually all of them, now they rarely do and they have been stung with the Bold.

    I say I know a thing or two and that is because I used to work for both of them

  16. mario

    Just use the e71 from nokia

    Problem solved. still no blackberry connect though.

  17. Dam Smith
    Thumb Up

    Software issues will be resoleved.

    As I think RIM will resolve these software issues as soon as possibel. Because there is a huge market of blackberry handsets and blackberry accessories.

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