T-Mobile said it has fixed a voice and data service disruption that impacted about 1.7 million subscribers, but the outage may be another public relations hit for the fourth-largest U.S. carrier.
Subscribers began complaining about problems with voice, data, and text capabilities early Tuesday, and the issues appeared to become more widespread as the day progressed.
"About 5% of our customers across various geographies were affected for much of Tuesday evening, and by late Tuesday PST their service was restored," T-Mobile said on its customer support page Tuesday night. "Our sole focus has been restoring full services for all customers; we are now investigating the root cause of the incident. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience that this has caused our customers."
The wireless operator said users still experiencing service issues should turn off their phones and turn them back on to resolve the problem.
The outage comes at a particularly bad time for T-Mobile, as it is still reeling from a disruption that almost caused its Sidekick users to lose all their personal contacts, calendar entries, photos, notes, and saved e-mails. While the data was eventually recovered and affected users received a $100 credit, the incident damaged T-Mobile's reputation, as well as the reputation of the Microsoft-owned Danger, which managed the data services for Sidekick.
"This is just lovely," wrote one poster on T-Mobile's support page. "I know everyone is going to start with the comments on how we shouldn't whine because this never happens. Well, having purchased a new phone because of multiple Sidekick issues, I feel we have the right to complain..."
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