back to article Orange gives the green light

Orange UK tells us the network snafu that's been leaving customers with slow or broken data connections is now fixed, so any remaining problems aren't its fault. Apparently the problems, which have plagued users for the last couple of days, were down to "an unusual software issue, which combined with a separate and localised …


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  1. Steve Mason


    All back to normal here in the midlands :)

  2. Anonymous Coward

    Ye aprs t b worin agn

    rprtn no prblems her, ornge hs fixxxxxxxxxxed the the the problm

  3. yorkwanderer
    Thumb Down


    It was working ... briefly ... now it's gone again

  4. The Vociferous Time Waster

    So long as you don't want 3G anywhere busy

    The backhaul on the Orange network is terrible, we switched to Orange and have had to disable 3G on all our handsets because 3G service is unreliable. You get full signal but no data capacity because all the cells are overloaded with traffic and the network can't cope.

    We spoke to Orange about it and they denied it for a good couple of months and then eventually admitted that they didn't have the capacity for 3G in places like London where lots of people want to use it.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Don't bother in London W1

      3G in London W1 has been useless ALL this year so far.

      Displays random signal strength, but no data is carried.

      Even voice calls get randomly dropped or take about ten attempts to connect. Incoming calls go straight to voicemail, and then you're not notified for hours, sometimes days.

      During a 45 minute "discussion", Orange eventally admitted that they had EIGHT non-functioning towers in the W1 area alone, and that they were having trouble repairing them due to poor access rights on private property in that area. Seems like they neglected to get spare keys cut, and are having problems contacting landlords.

      Using BT Openzone isn't an option, unless on the rare occasion you manage to connect, you manage to remember the silly password EVERY TIME you connect. I gave up on Openzone a while back, as it was permanently out of action, and Orange were offering no signs of sorting it.

      The only reliable places to get 3G are outside any Orange shop, as they have micro-cells in their shops (not a very publicised fact), or failing that, stand outside the AppleStore on Regent St for free WiFi.

      Up the road in Liverpool St, things are a lot better, and in the countryside, even more so - sometimes indistinguisable in speed from ADSL. It is somewhat ridiculous that in Ibiza, the 3G coverage through Orange is consistently excellent.

      What a farce.

      Orange's response is to offer to take you out of contract as long as you return the phone. Even then they cock up the return process and try and pursue you for the value of the phone and termination costs.

      Oh, and don't take any notice of their tech support. Their usual response to complaints about the 3G coverage is to say, "your phone must be corrupted or have a virus - wipe it and restore to factory settings. We don't care that you'll lose everything. Oh,and if you've come from another Telco, don't do a restore from your previous iPhone with them, or all the wrong network settings will be put in place".

      A horrible combo of wrong information and downright scare-mongering.


  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Mocking seems a little pointless Bill?! Still a damn site more reliable than the O2 data network used to be before we moved across.. As long as they don't make a habit of it of course..

  6. QuackingPlums

    Probability factor 1 to 1...

    "We have normality. I repeat -- we have normality. Anything you still can't cope with is, therefore, your own problem".

    Is this like how the London Tube has separate classifications for "normal" and "good" service?

  7. Lottie

    Bra'fud fine

    Actually very speedy up here.

    1. Lottie

      scratch that

      Down again.

  8. Ed 12
    Thumb Down


    Still going up and down like a yoyo in Belfast

  9. The Jay

    Reading - Nil! ... Orange... also Nil?

    It was working fine last night and this morning, and now, dead. Quieter than O2's technical services team department...

  10. SearleCom

    Still not working

    Rebooted my phone and tried the internet again, getting an ICAP error now.

    I'm in Bristol


  11. gav_taylor

    still having problems

    it seems to be back on in manchester city centre (M1) but my missus says its still down at home in Stockport (SK3)

  12. Gareth 14
    Thumb Down

    Not working still

    Still down in cheshire, still lots of outage reports on

  13. Anonymous Coward

    had it but its gone again

    It was working in Leeds but its disappeared about an hour ago. FAIL!!

  14. Marco 5

    Working this morning

    Now its dead...again.

  15. Bottle_Cap

    Not getting

    a signal at all today. Occasionally it flickers into life with one bar but mostly dead as a doornail (in leamington spa).

  16. Neil 57


    was working in morning, but its fell over, bout hour or so ago. oops

  17. nsam
    Thumb Down

    Totally unreliable

    Unreliable, close to useless in West London.

    Maybe Orange giving a refund for the period when the data network is unusable would help with goodwill and to focus their mind. I pay an additional £5 per month, so pro-rota refund would be acceptable until the problem is resolved satisfactorily long-term.

    1. Pete_UK

      Orange, refund for network problems?

      Good luck with that. A few years ago the network was down for over a month at my home location (I live around half a mile from a mast, which had gone down randomly), leaving us to drive 2 miles just to get enough signal to call out on. We contacted Orange for an explanation of the problem and refund of a months contract cost (myself and my parents, all on orange contracts), and was pretty much told to go whistle - they don't guarantee anything when it comes to network or service coverage.

  18. Anonymous Coward

    So, in other news..

    Is Demon unfucked yet? 50%-ish of DNS lookups were failing yesterday. They're getting more like Clueless and Witless by the day- nowt on the status page, and phone system grinding to a halt/dropping calls- and no help there, either.

  19. pr83
    Thumb Down


    Was working fine all day here (Birmingham), but just gone down again...

  20. Bonce
    Thumb Down


    It most certainly is not working (London). Damn them! :(

  21. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Bonce


      You direct your customers at a page with comments in which you call them losers. Good stuff.

  22. nsam

    Can't even complain

    Just tried to email Orange via their website to complain. It goes to a "page not found" error when try to submit. Nice way to keep the volume of complaints down!

  23. Alistair James 1

    Orange just like 3

    I moved to Orange recently having had all sorts of issues with the muppets at 3, now it looks like I have moved to some even bigger muppets.....great

  24. Richard Cartledge
    Thumb Down


    That explains why my three mobile connection has been so bad, it is pretty dire anyway, but falls back to the Orange network for GPRS/Edge when three's own 3G is not available.

  25. Mark Seymour

    Issue defiantly not resolved.

    I was connected at at 118bps (w00t!). I then toggled "flight mode" to reconnect and now can't connect at all.

  26. APS

    Orange support?

    Don't bother calling orange business support - we have more information on this thread than they do and are probably more polite than the teenager at business support who's idea of customer service was to inform me that "you aren't the only one affected, orange staff are affected to!" Still not working in Northampton

    1. Ian 16

      so what did you want?

      a blow job?

      I dont work for orange but I do work for another large telco... what do you expect them to do flip some magic switch that nobody has found yet and give you instant priority connection? maybe we should send a courier out by helicopter? Outages happen, do you honestly think it is in Oranges interest to prolong this one?

      When a site goes down or a general network error comes up we can confirm an issue with the customer we rarely give an expectation of time because when done and it fails the first place the customer goes is for the neck. I know an HLR might take 4 hours to fix and I could tell the customer that but really there is no benefit to either by doing so and if it comes up early then everyone is happy.

      If a customer asks, I can take the site ID and go through to tech for an update... they look it up in a database and can tell me if the engineer is at the site, if they are waiting on parts/ planning permission or if they've maybe replaced a power supply etc etc.

      I would love to be able to give real-time updates to customers and I've requested in the past that we get the same access to that database as tech do. The truth is however that most people do not care and due to that lack of popularity the issue is not a priority.

      I know the worst outage we've had recently was when BTs burne house went up in smoke an issue completely outside our control.. To give you an example of cell issues We were unable to give coverage to a village for 8 weeks because the council refused to give us permission to cut down part of a tree - again, outside our control. I admit that once we explained this to said customer he was a lot more understanding and appreciated that we were at least looking into it. That bit I understand, personally I don't care how long something takes to fix as long as I know progress is being done.

      Customer service agents are paid to be empathetic to customers. To try and find a solution that is positive to both the company and the customer. Depending on your initial attitude we MAY have been inclined to give you some compensation but generally we never guarantee 100% uptime due to the nature of the network in the first place.

      I'm quite sure every one of those agents in that contact centre wishes you had a fully working connection but maybe I should suggest you look in the mirror at your own company and its policies for perfection? There is no amicable snappy solution to your problem... you want it fixed, we want it fixed. Depending on how long this goes on for, wait till it is back up and go back to them expressing your dissatisfaction you never know what they might do for you.

      Regardless of your attitude a good customer service agent will always apologise... depending on that attitude depends on whether we actually mean it or not.

  27. Keith_C


    If I leave it for an indeterminate amount of time, eventually when looking at the phone it might have a data connection.

    I thought I'd bust something when I dropped it the other day, so was relieved to find out it was Orange!

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not sorted at all

    Just got my iphone only to get the 'could not activate cellular data network' message straightaway... just what I payed for

    It's been on and off here in York, and certainly not fixed

    I've been with orange for years and am very dissapointed on the lack of information on this outage. thank god for the register!

  29. Jen 3

    Big Nope!

    2g and 3g data unavailable in Preston, Lancashire all Day.

    Flakey in Lytham tonight.

    All good strong 2g and 3g signals, just no data.

  30. Jemma

    ... the futures bright - the futures stupid thieving clueless gits with a major attitude problem...

    Thats all I am going to say on the subject

  31. jvincent
    Thumb Up

    Mess up

    love the quote 'Orange is quite capable of messing up the network on its own.' Hope they don't bring T-Mobile down to their crap quality. Still... Anything's gotta be better than the strain that O2 are facing with their 2G & 3G & data side of things. There's nothing better than vodafone, wit hno problems & I get what data I want when I want it with them.

    1. noroimusha

      that is all fine

      but you will be instantly charged if you go over you data limit, last time i got charged by orange for going over my limit i had to pay £4 ( 250MB was the limit and i have reached 600MB )

    2. DarK 3

      T-Mobile - Don't get people started ...

      Customer service = No Service

      Most CS operators fail to even manage to put you through when transferring a call - Usually they hang up on you.

      Billing = When we want to bill you we will - in the mean time let me bill you for your normal monthly contract that you cancelled months ago

      I left in early July, been told September for a final bill, just how hard is it to add 2 months line rental to a "cancelation fee" at the time of cancellation?

      As said, Vodaphone FTW ... I moved after 3 years with T-Mobile and not regretted it since...

  32. Ron Eve


    As other posters have said here London generally is rubbish for Orange. I've been working in the Camden area for about a year and I've just about given up trying to use my mobile. Even out in the open on the canal the service is spotty. I've had to direct all friends and clients to email me where possible. Several attempts at numbers, connections dropped, horrendous service...

    If what some of the people here say is true (cells not working or repaired) then surely we have some recourse to recompense for the failure in service. I swear I got better results than this 20 years ago with my first mobile phone...

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Damn!! Someone beat me to....

    Orange is quite capable of messing up the network on its own. (snigger).

    Still, I dont really care, I never "got" this mobile data craze anyway; my orange phone is just that, a PHONE. SMS is a license to print money and trying to read a website on a phone?? Forget it.

  34. Anonymous Coward

    safeguard is shit

    I had problems with with Orange for much of the mid week and weekend. Obviously people all over the country were having connection issues but when finally it would let me connect Friday afternoon pretty much every website was being blocked by Orange safeguard because it thought it was an 18+ site, including oranges own tech support forums. I think I rang them half a dozen times over the last two days each time I was told I would get a sim update and then I'd need to turn my phone off and on again. full service was not resumed until this morning. ridiculous, nothing on the Orange website and the goons in the call centre seemed absolutely clueless.

  35. Zebulebu

    Odd then...

    That Orange sent an email through to my office this afternoon (to completely the wrong person, of course), advising us that many of their APNs were still down and they were 'working to fix the problem'.

  36. Andus McCoatover

    Let us know???

    "So it should all be working now, and if not then do let us know". Silly Wabbit!

    From where? A BT phonebox??

    Press button 'B' if I don't get through so I can get my three-penny-bit back, 'cos it doesn't connect ??

    Yeah, right.

  37. Witty username

    Orange are retards

    and im not even a customer. between their EPICLY shite firmware "customisation" that has rendered my other halfs HTC desire useless, to their brilliant technical support and shop staff - "its connecting to 3G, its just not showing the symbol" (a month later) "yeah your account isnt enabled for 3G"

    im on vodafone, who are almost equally as shit, with their fantastic technical support "my phone wont download MMS's, tried 2 handsets" "RESTART YUR PHONE HUR HUR" "but its two diff.." "TAKE IT TO VODAFOEN SHOP LOLZ".

    Im going to o2. if they're just as shit, im going to launch my own fucking satelite and use that.

  38. Obvious Robert

    I'm with T-Mobile

    for the last 16 months, had nothing but excellent service from them and planning to stay with them when my contract's up. Absolutely dreading what the the Orange/T-Mobile merger may do to them...

  39. yorkwanderer


    And it's gone again ...

  40. Anonymous Coward

    Yup, fail

    Yup, 10pm onwards in Birmingham... now 5pm and still it's down again!

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Orange don't like having their pips squeezed

    Had a little chat with Orange Business Customer "Support" this morning. They acknowledged that there'd been an outage Weds thru Fri last week, and again on Tuesday. They've been told that the problems are now fully fixed - I suggested that this would have been what they thought on Monday, but their script didn't cater for any irony.

    Having observed that this was a massive service outage, suggesting it was bigger than any other operator's data outage to date, and telling them how much business I lost as a result (I was travelling, and blissfully out of reach of any WiFi), I suggested that they owed me. At this point I was passed to the friendly assistant's evil twin brother, who had no interest in being nice to me (nor, I suspect, to anyone... ever... in his whole life). His view was firmly that shit happens, and that it was my tough luck that Orange's "high quality" (their words, not mine) data service let my business down. He almost laughed out loud when I told him that I'd expect to be released from contract if it ever happened again - he considered the data package to be an optional add-on to the voice contract, not something essential to the whole offering.

    I've been with Orange for years, and have had more than a few ups and downs along the way, but this could actually be the straw to break this particular camel's back.

    Shame on you, Orange. You disgust me.

  42. Gamberoni
    Thumb Down

    Orange email dead?

    They appear to be having an other huge problem with their email at the moment. I'm not a customer, but a friend asked me why their email wasn't sending. I checked the web address - - and it's not accessible. I use opendns at home and it traced the issue to the dns servers at There seems to be quite a bit of traffic on the forums at - that might be worth someone at the Reg investigating?

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