M1 to give three days of free service

M1 was just fined $10,000 last month for not meeting Quality of Service standards. (File photo) (File photo)

[UPDATE: Beleaguered telco M1 announced on Friday it will give free service to all its postpaid customers for three full days following a 64-hour 3G network outage in several parts of Singapore.

In a Facebook post, M1 said that "to express our sincere appreciation to the affected customers for their patience and understanding", all postpaid customers can avail of free local mobile calls, SMS, MMS and data services from 10 to 12 February this year.

Also, prepaid customers will get a S$1 bonus for every top-up of S$17 and above for the whole of next month.

On Thursday, the Consumers Association of Singapore urged telcos to compensate customers for service disruptions.

M1 said Thursday evening that 3G service had been fully restored in affected areas.

In a Facebook post, it advised customers using 3G handset and still unable to get 3G service to reboot their devices.

Many customers commenting on the post, however, claimed they could still not get the service or that there was no connection at all.

At 6pm on Wednesday M1 said it expected full restoration of 3G services in remaining affected areas by midnight of Thursday. It explained that engineers are working "flat out" to restore the network but that the restoration work was complex.

Earlier at 9am, it said it had partially restored its network coverage
round the clock repair works. It says a significant number of customers are now able to revert back to 3G service.]

M1's 3G mobile network services to customers in the West Coast, Jurong and Tuas areas were disrupted Tuesday due to a power problem.

In a statement in the afternoon, the telco explained that an upgrade by one of its vendors at 3:00am set off gas suppression and water sprinklers, which in turn caused an outage to one its 3G network switches.

As 2G network services were not affected, the 3G phones of affected customers will automatically switch to the 2G network, the firm said.

The majority of 4G phones will require customers to turn off the 4G service manually on their devices, and this will prompt the terminals to fall back to the 2G network, it added.

"To restore services, we have connected the network entities to a working switch and are conducting final stages of testing. Actual migration of traffic from the affected switch will take place progressively," M1 said.

“We sincerely apologise to our affected customers for the inconvenience caused, and thank them for their support, understanding and patience. Please be assured that our top priority is to resolve this issue as quickly as possible,” said Karen Kooi, M1 chief executive officer.

“Added measures will be put in place to prevent recurrence of such incidents,” she added.

M1 said on its Facebook page that one of its mobile network switches was "impacted by a power problem".

Customers across the island started reporting patchy service around 8am and took to Twitter and Facebook to complain they could not make calls or send SMSes.

Facebook user Ang Chee Slang wrote on M1's Facebook page, "I hope that this issue can be fixed in no time, all the M1 users are suffering from this issue, I hope you guys will give us a good explanation and cover our losses for your disruption of the service we paid for".

Just last month, the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) fined M1, SingTel and Starhub S$10,000 each for not meeting Quality of Service (QoS) Standard after a outage in September.

Under the QoS standard, at least 99 per cent service coverage must be provided.

In November 2011,
M1 was slapped with a hefty $300,000 fine for a major disruption in May that year.

Related stories:

M1 fined S$300,000
M1, Starhub, Singtel slapped with S$10k fine
Faulty card caused M1 outage

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