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O2 refuse to supply HSDPA

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#1
Appetite4

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UPDATE: 25 FEB 2008 - in response to my letter below O2 technical customer service have today advised me that all consumer sims are "limited to the lower end of the 3G speed range for data". HSDPA is NOT therefore available to anyone except business customers on O2. They described this as a "hot topic at the moment" and agreed refer it to the marketing department to review the policy. They will also brief the CEO's office so they can reply fully to my letter.

I will post that reply when received but in the meantime I would suggest anyone who has bought an XDA Stellar or XDA Orbit 2 on a consumer tarriff expecting to get full HSDPA functionality makes their views known to O2.

I am disappointed that the pay monthly sim only deal is of no use to me but I would be furious if I had paid O2 for one of those devices (which are advertised by O2 as having 1.8mbps capability), was paying the full monthly charge, was tied to a long contract and still wasn't getting full functionality! (Not even full speed 3G it seems!!)

Paul.

Below are edits from a letter I am sending to the O2 UK CEO today regarding my sim only O2 connection and lack of HSDPA speed.

Since obtaining the sim for the above number, with the unlimited web bolt on, through the O2 online store I have been trying to get it enabled for high speed data access (HSDPA). I have spoken to customer services on about ten occasions now."

Finally yesterday I was told that “As a matter of policy HSDPA will not be enabled on your sim because of the tariff you are on”.

I am therefore writing to you to get definitive answers to the following questions:-

1.- Can I have HSDPA access enabled on my sim?

If the answer to that is no then...

2.- Why is this? ie is HSDPA not available to any sim only customer? Or is it not available to any individual consumer as opposed to a business customer?

3.- Where is this limitation set out in either the T&C’s for the overall service or for the unlimited web bolt on? (or indeed in any of the online shop marketing and sign up material?)

I await your reply with interest.


I would also be interested to hear from any forum members with similar, or totally different, experiences with O2 .....and if any O2 people in the know are reading this your views would abviously be very welcome. I will post the official reply when I get it.

Paul.

Edited by Appetite4, 25 February 2008 - 04:26 PM.

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#2
chucky.egg

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We have O2 SIMs at work and at least one I've seen has HSDPA (well, it has the H symbol, I've not checked the speed)

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#3
Appetite4

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We have O2 SIMs at work and at least one I've seen has HSDPA (well, it has the H symbol, I've not checked the speed)


Thanks chucky. If you do get the chance to check the speed let me know. My Touch Cruise also shows the H symbol but speed tests (using www.dslreports.com/mspeed) reveal on O2 it is limited to 120kbps. (Tmob sim in same handset achieves 500-600kbps).

Paul.

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#4
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Not strictly relevant but the last time I was on 02 was PAYG after a contract had expired with my old Magician. I was mighty pi$$ed when I found out after going PAYG that I couldn't get 'proper' internet access with that setup!

Couple that with extortionate perMeg charges (on contract and no decent bundle available) and I decided to go Orange - and how I wish I went T-Mob!! In our UMTS/HSDPA routers at work, we use a T-Mobile SIM only with WnWplus bolted to it for a total of £20 a month and stream CCTV and allsorts thru it! Works like a charm!

To me, O2 are the least progressive of the big 4 with regards data. Its only due to the iPhone have they decided to rollout a worthwhile EDGE network and that is a simple software upgrade to a standard GPRS enabled base station!!

It will be interesting if you get anything more than an automated reply to your letter - I certainly don't expect any O2 board execs will be slapping their collective foreheads in sudden realisation that they been dolts up till now and grateful to you for showing them the error of their ways - but you never know!!

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#5
Appetite4

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It will be interesting if you get anything more than an automated reply to your letter - I certainly don't expect any O2 board execs will be slapping their collective foreheads in sudden realisation that they been dolts up till now and grateful to you for showing them the error of their ways - but you never know!!


:-) Tend to agree Samsonite but since HSDPA coverage is now (apparently) available to 30% of O2's 3G covered areas I can't help wondering if it really is 'a matter of policy' or simply the ignorance of customer service staff that is stopping me having it. (The bits I edited out of my earlier post were mostly about the ignorance of O2 CS staff when it comes to HSDPA). After all why invest in the network then bar most people from using it? ....but then maybe that's why I am not CEO at O2.

To be fair to the CS staff it wouldn't be the first time they were hung out to dry by no-one bothering with the proper briefings when a new product/service was launched. I used to answer letters like the one I just sent obo the Chairman and CEO of another major telco and I saw it happen all too often.

Incidentally, I have heard (through a different forum) from an O2 customer, who sourced his XDA Orbit 2 and sim from O2, that he also is limited to 3G speed and CS have been unable to help him either. My suspicion that it might be because I am a sim only customer may therefore be misplaced.

I have also now had a hard copy reply from the Complaint Review Service to my previous enquiries confirming that they are "not able to improve the speed as you're on the correct speed for your tariff." I emailed them straight back and asked for a list of the tariffs on which HSDPA would be considered the 'correct' speed.

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#6
Confucious

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Have O2 ever said you COULD get HSDPA on PAYG?

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#7
mandt

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Good point, PAYG is often more restricted than Pay monthly, F'rinstance T-Mo won't let you do Video calling on PAYG

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#8
Appetite4

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Have O2 ever said you COULD get HSDPA on PAYG?


Confuscious

Fair point but I should clarify that the deal I am querying with them is a the "Simplicity" pay monthly sim only - NOT a PAYG. It is based on the standard pay monthly but £10 a month cheaper because no handset is issued and it carries only a 30 day cancellation rather than the traditional 12/18/24 month contract period.

O2 don't make any disclaimer about speed limitations by tariff anywhere that I am able to find which is why it is one of the questions I have asked - where in the T&C's etc is the tariff excluded? Put another way where can a prospective customer find out which speeds are allowed on which tariffs? There is also no refernce to any tariff based limitations on their HSDPA coverage map at http://www.webmap.o2.../?Search=Search .

O2 do however sell handsets listing HSDPA as a feature and as I pointed out in post #5 customers with these (which are not available on PAYG so far as I can see) don't seem able to get it enabled either.

Paul.

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#9
everton2004

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I have encountered the same problem with the SIM-Only contract and only getting 120Kbps on HSDPA. I've spoken to Customer Services (who have in turn spoken to Technical Support) and the excuses I was given were laughable:

"Slow speeds can be caused by network congestion in your area"

"If a website is busy you can suffer slow connection speeds"

...and then I eventually got...

"I've confirmed with Technical Support and there is no way we can speed up your connection"

Thank god it's only a 30 day contract! Off back to T-Mobile I think. However, I'm not leaving O2 without kicking up a stink about this just as Appetite4 has. I'll be escalating to the CS Managers then onto CEO. What a pathetic way to treat your customers - you can have a 120k connection cos you're only a retail customer. Business customers can have the full whack. Sorry O2 but that's no way to run a business.

Word of advice to anyone thinking of joining O2 - if you want high speed 3G data, forget about it - stick with T-Mobile and avoid these jokers. :D

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#10
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Don't know a lot (ie - I know nothing) about O2
but...
http://www.mobiholic...p...st&p=880603

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#11
everton2004

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Don't know a lot (ie - I know nothing) about O2
but...
http://www.mobiholic...p...st&p=880603


It seems the less anyone knows about O2 the better! :D It seems there are two classes of customer they care about:

Business customers
iPhone users

...and that's it really. Interesting how they advertise consumer handsets such as the Kaiser and Touch Cruise with HSDPA as a feature, yet do not offer HSDPA to consumer customers. They don't even mention this restriction in their Terms and Conditions. What is really making my blood boil is that I emailed O2 CS before I signed up and specifically enquired about HSDPA access on my tariff. The reply stated:

"Thank you for showing interest in joining our network as an online Pay Monthly customer.

If you purchased the online 25 tariff (SIM only), you'll be eligible to choose the O2 Unlimited Web Bolt On. This Bolt On offers unlimited web browsing on your mobile in the UK.

The Web Bolt On allows you unlimited use of O2 UK's Edge/GPRS/ 3G networks (as applicable to your phone), for personal internet use via your mobile phone. All usage must be for your private, personal and non-commercial purposes. "


Notice that they did not mention the fact that I would not be given access to high speed HSDPA. I'm going for the jugular on this one, after which, O2 can shove their network where the sun don't shine! :(

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#12
everton2004

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Prepare to laugh everyone! :D

O2's latest excuse is that because I'm in an area with strong 3G reception (two 3G masts in my area) the problem is most likely a faulty SIM card and they're sending me a new one! They're digging a hole for themselves now though. I told them I'd found posts in the internet from other O2 customers who had been told by CS that they will not get HSDPA because they're a retail customer and not a business customer. The reply was (and I quote):

"No that is not the case, it is not O2's policy to restrict 3G services due to you being either a Consumer or Business customer"

So now they're telling porkie pies. I'll play along and when I get the new SIM, and it's restricted to low speed again, I shall call them back yet again.

Is it just me or is it only T-Mobile who "does what it says on the tin" as they say? :(

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#13
crazyc

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Prepare to laugh everyone! :D

O2's latest excuse is that because I'm in an area with strong 3G reception (two 3G masts in my area) the problem is most likely a faulty SIM card and they're sending me a new one! They're digging a hole for themselves now though. I told them I'd found posts in the internet from other O2 customers who had been told by CS that they will not get HSDPA because they're a retail customer and not a business customer. The reply was (and I quote):

"No that is not the case, it is not O2's policy to restrict 3G services due to you being either a Consumer or Business customer"

So now they're telling porkie pies. I'll play along and when I get the new SIM, and it's restricted to low speed again, I shall call them back yet again.

Is it just me or is it only T-Mobile who "does what it says on the tin" as they say? :(


I too am following this up with O2. No one has yet told me that it is policy to withhold hsdpa.

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#14
jimbouk

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Assuming this isnt a wind up, then this really is a case of mis-selling.

Unless O2 specifically told personal customers that they would not be able to use HSDPA, then the device description (and their apparent lack of knowledge at their own customer services) would mean a very easy ?win in a legal battle.

So disgruntled H-deprived O2 stellar owners:

1) Force them to upgrade you to H
2) Force them to cancel agreeement, refund any payment for device, return the device and get your mac code for migrating to T or O or even heaven forbid V!

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#15
crazyc

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I have now had an email reply to my specific question regarding this alleged policy submitted via the O2 website. The email states categorically that there is no such policy.
Will post full text of email reply when I get a chance.

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#16
Markda2000

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On Friday night I went somewhere for the first time with my Stellar (Haydock) and found i hand HSDPA for the first time on o2. Up until that point I was unaware that the 3g symbol changed to H and believed I had previously been on HSDPA already. I am on a consumer tariff and have founf the 3g coverage to be better than tmob's (at least for the places a have gone).

I was not able to do a speed test, as I was late for a wedding reception and was only downloading some directions.

But I can definitely say that o2 do provide HSDPA on consumer tariffs

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#17
wilkhaven

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I am on a consumer tariff and have founf the 3g coverage to be better than tmob's (at least for the places a have gone).



I have to disagree, in my experience the TM 3g coverage is far superior to O2, but again that will be down to the area's in which I use it and they obviously differ from yours!

I use O2 for the wireless data connection for my work laptop, and have a Vario III on TM for personal use and connecting my laptop to the outside world. I rarely fail to get a 3g connection with TM, and usually an HSDPA connection, although with O2 it is very rare.

I did get a good connection in the centre of Wakefield a few days ago on the O2 connection, with HSDPA - the connection was showing at 3.9Mb - is this speed really possible as it seems rather high, but the data throughput was the best I've experienced?

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#18
wilkhaven

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I am on a consumer tariff and have founf the 3g coverage to be better than tmob's (at least for the places a have gone).



I have to disagree, in my experience the TM 3g coverage is far superior to O2, but again that will be down to the area's in which I use it and they obviously differ from yours!

I use O2 for the wireless data connection for my work laptop, and have a Vario III on TM for personal use and connecting my laptop to the outside world. I rarely fail to get a 3g connection with TM, and usually an HSDPA connection, although with O2 it is very rare.

I did get a good connection in the centre of Wakefield a few days ago on the O2 connection, with HSDPA - the connection was showing at 3.9Mb - is this speed really possible as it seems rather high, but the data throughput was the best I've experienced?

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#19
Markda2000

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I have to disagree, in my experience the TM 3g coverage is far superior to O2, but again that will be down to the area's in which I use it and they obviously differ from yours!

I use O2 for the wireless data connection for my work laptop, and have a Vario III on TM for personal use and connecting my laptop to the outside world. I rarely fail to get a 3g connection with TM, and usually an HSDPA connection, although with O2 it is very rare.

I did get a good connection in the centre of Wakefield a few days ago on the O2 connection, with HSDPA - the connection was showing at 3.9Mb - is this speed really possible as it seems rather high, but the data throughput was the best I've experienced?


The 3.9mb I believe is possible but admittedly unusual, the best way to find out is to do a speed test when next in the area. If from your laptop then this link I have found is reliable http://www.speedtest.net/

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#20
jimbouk

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Maybe o2 are able to offer 3.9 (but that might be the rating as opposed to the actual speed).

We are supposed to have 7.2 within the next 18 months across most H networks.

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