O2, Britain’s second biggest operator, and Japan’s Softbank reported network outages on Thursday – due to major software glitch in telecom equipment supplied by Ericsson – impacting customer experience.
Ericsson, the second largest telecom network supplier in the world, said it was working with mobile operators in Britain and Japan to restore full service to millions of customers hit by outages, Reuters reported.
“We are aware of the issue and are working together with our customers to solve it as soon as possible,” an Ericsson spokesman said.
SoftBank, which has 40 million mobile users, said the outages stemmed from problems at exchanges for its wireless LTE network.
SoftBank Group’s mobile phone services were disrupted in some parts of Japan on Thursday, ahead of an initial public offering (IPO) of its domestic telecoms unit later this month that will potentially raise $21 billion.
Some customers at Japan’s third-largest telco have been unable to make calls or use the mobile internet in the hours following the onset of connection problems at 0439 GMT.
O2, the second largest telecom operator in the UK with 32 million customers, said customers of Tesco Mobile, Sky Mobile and GiffGaff, which all use its network, were also affected by the outage.
It appears that the network issues started about 5.30am with around 1,662 complaints made before 7am, and customers across Manchester, London and Southampton have all reported outages, according to media reports.
O2, which is owned by Spain’s Telefonica, blamed an issue in a third-party supplier’s system that was impacting services globally.
UK’s BT Group yesterday said it will not source core 5G equipment from Huawei and it will remove the existing core 4G network in two years.
Ericsson and Nokia were expected to gain from the problems faced by Huawei and ZTE in the global telecom network market.
Both Japan and UK are aiming for leadership in the 5G market and all telecom equipment makers are keen to sign 5G equipment deals in the two advanced economies. The current network issue, which is yet to be solved, may pose threats to the dominance of Ericsson in 4G equipment market.