Telstra throttled its free data day, frustrating customers even further

(Photo by James Alcock/Getty Images)

Telstra offered another free data day yesterday to make up for a fourth network outage in three months – this latest one just over a fortnight ago. But many customers were left disappointed and wanting more.

All social media networks were filled with widespread complaints about speeds, with congestion hitting the Telstra network heavily.

One of the biggest complaints was from subscribers to Telstra’s AFL and NRL services, which struggled to stream live games, despite those streams usually not counting towards their monthly data limit regardless.

Of course there were also users who just wanted to download as much as possible for the sake of it, including the guy who downloaded 420GBs of data during the telco’s last data day. He posted on his Facebook account that around lunch time he had already surpassed his previous record.

However a Telstra spokesman denied that the day was a failure and confirmed that some areas were throttled to handle the demand.

“To ensure fair access for everyone, we have managed the network traffic and in some areas this may have meant slightly slower speeds for a period,” he said.

“We have only done this in areas where we have experienced extremely high congestion.”

This is what the spokesman said about the day as a whole:

“Telstra’s mobile network performed strongly yesterday with millions of customers across Australia taking advantage of Free Data Day.

“Over a 24 hour period, or 25 hours for those living in states where daylight savings ended, customers downloaded the most amount of data ever on our mobile network.

“Customers took the opportunity to stream and download movies, binge watch TV shows, run computer updates and install software, and compete in gaming marathons around the world, for free.

“By the end of Sunday, our customers had download 2,686 terabytes of data, which is 46% more than the amount downloaded on Free Data Day in 14 February, and equivalent to 3.4 million HD movies.

“The previous record of 1,841 terabytes reached on our first Free Data Day was surpassed at 4pm AEST. We reached the peak network traffic level of the previous Free Data Day by 8am and stayed above that level until midnight.

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