The UK has gone into meltdown over the O2 nationwide outage that is affecting hundreds of thousands of people. Although many have taken to Twitter to complain that they can’t stalk their friends on social media or find their way home using their mobile device’s map apps, O2’s outage is causing a much bigger issue. It’s not just mobiles that are affected.
That’s right, it has been reported that any device using the O2 network to connect to the internet is experiencing the same problems when it comes to data. For this reason, businesses across the country are also experiencing difficulties. Not only are some companies unable to take calls from existing and prospective customers, but many utilise IoT (Internet of Things) applications that rely on a cellular connection in order to operate. In an article published by Wired, they state that public transport systems, payment services and more have been crippled by the loss of service; a huge complication for shoppers during the run up to Christmas.
The outage began at around 05.30 GMT this morning and is showing no sign of being resolved any time soon. O2 have issued a statement pointing the finger at one of their third-party software providers. They also believe that they aren’t the only network that has been affected around the world.
“The network issue we are currently experiencing remains a top priority for us and we are working as quickly as possible to fix the issues.
All O2 technical teams are working closely with one of our third party suppliers who has identified a global software issue in their system which has impacted data services. As a result of this incident, we are experiencing a high demand on our network which means some customers may have issues making and receiving voice calls.
We believe other mobile operators around the world are also affected.
We apologise to our customers for any inconvenience.” – O2
How can multi-network data SIM cards help in the future?
Although outages like these don’t happen on a regular basis, there is a solution to reduce the impact of such occurrences. Introducing, multi-network data SIM cards.
A multi-network data SIM card is simply a SIM card that is aimed at IoT devices. They are able to migrate networks based on the strength of their connection. This is achieved in two ways; either on a steered basis, or a non-steered basis.
Steered multi-network data SIM cards rely on a parent network. When this network completely loses signal, it will migrate to the next network. When the parent network becomes available again (even on GPRS), it will connect to that particular network.
Non-steered multi-network data SIM cards work in a slightly different way, they aren’t dependant on a parent network. This means that your IoT device will always connect to the strongest possible connection. Here’s an example:
Your GPS Tracker uses a non-steered multi-network data SIM card. It is connected to O2 via a 3G connection as this is the strongest one available. The GPS tracker then identifies a 4G connection on Vodafone. The SIM card will automatically migrate to Vodafone.
In this situation where O2 have had a major outage, either solution would have enable your devices to stay connected (via a different network).
Are you interested in a multi-network data SIM card solution? Please talk to our team on 0333 313 5005 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The InfiSIM team would be more than happy to help you stay connected.