Telstra joined its major rivals in crashing overnight, with its NBN and ADSL voice and data services knocked out.
The Telstra failure comes just 24 hours after Virgin Mobile infuriated customers when its network went to SOS only for around 9 hours. On Wednesday, the iiNet network crashed for more than 12 hours.
Telstra’s latest crash appears to have happened just before midnight on Thursday evening – some reported problems as early as 6.30pm – and continued into the morning when customers in most major capitals, as well as regional areas woke to access problems.
The failure comes just 24 hours after CEO Andy Penn delivered a major speech pledging to do better and improve the company’s customer service, taking swipes at Uber and Facebook in the process.
Penn’s comments included the prescient observation that “whilst no network operator in the world can guarantee that disruptions won’t occur from time to time, what we can do is reduce the likelihood and the impact”.
The company is spending $50 million to upgrade monitoring and improve recovery times on the network following a series of embarrassing failures that led to two free data days for customers.
Today’s failure brings the total to five in three months.
Started work from home this morning to realise that @Telstra is having a nation wide day off. So no internet for me today!
— Earl Patterson (@EarlPatterson) May 20, 2016
This morning Telstra acknowledged that “customers with NBN voice and data services and ADSL services may be having difficulty connecting to the internet”.
“We apologise to customers and are doing everything possible to restore services as quickly as possible,” Telstra said in a statement.
But like Virgin Mobile, which infuriated customers by failing to reveal the problem with its network until just before it was fixed yesterday, Telstra also sparked anger from its customers for failing to properly explain what was happening, with many taking to social media to try and crowdsource the problem.
They were angry that Telstra failed to update its service status page with the outage.
It wasn’t until after 9am that the company took to social media to notify customers of the problem and post on its site.
NBN & ADSL customers may have difficulty connecting to the internet. We're working to restore ASAP. For updates https://t.co/P9KGpiJt1e
— Telstra (@Telstra) May 20, 2016
One long-suffering customer wondered why only some parts of the business were prone to failure.
Dear @Telstra, how long will this outage last? How come your billing department never has an outage? Love Ruth
— Ruth Townsend (@RuthTownsendlaw) May 19, 2016
By 11.30am, Telstra said significant restoration of NBN and ADSL services had occurred.
“We’re working to restore remaining services ASAP,” the company said.
Yesterday NSW police arrested a 12-year-old boy who’d lit a fire in a Telstra pit in the northern NSW town of Taree, knocking out internet services in the region, but that incident was unrelated to the overnight crash.