Brown’s Bytes – Oh, To Have Network Resiliency

Welcome to Brown’s Bytes! Your weekly insight from Mobliciti’s CTO Andy Brown. Follow #brownsbytes

7th December 2018

I’m sure most of you will have seen that O2 had a bit of a hiccup yesterday with their network.

Personally, I feel for them as the fault wasn’t entirely theirs and I actually think they did a pretty decent job of getting everything back online within 24 hours given the scale of the issue.

What’s been interesting about this outage is that it highlighted something has been flying under the radar for years.

There were multiple reports yesterday of businesses who were struggling to function due to this outage. Over time, many businesses have built processes that rely on staff using mobile devices to operate. We live increasingly in a world where much more than email/calendar/contacts are being used over mobile networks.

The real problem here was that all their devices were down!

Network resiliency is something that companies have been serious about for years on fixed line. Makes total sense to have a backup plan, or at least to not have all your eggs in one basket.

However, in the world of carrier airtime bills, this is precisely what companies don’t do!! They lump all their connections together and negotiate a deal with a single carrier. Of course, they do this for a very good reason – to ensure they get the best deal possible, they need to aggregate the spend together as much as possible to get a bigger discount (purchasing 101).

Now, this needn’t have been the case if you’d bought your airtime from us. One of the things we offer is a combined Vodafone and O2 tariff. We offer the same deal whether it’s O2 or Vodafone, you get a single bill, shared data allowances, our portal and all the things you would expect to get from a single carrier, but crucially you can pick and choose how many you have on a red SIM and how many you have on a blue SIM. And you can keep changing this if you need to… no fee, no change in billing, no change in tariff, no change in number.

This gives you the flexibility to let your users choose the best network for them (because everyone moans about the coverage where they live), but more importantly it means you are network resilient on mobile. Immediately you can halve the outage just by having a split, but better than that you can even move key people to another network if you really need to.

As with many incidents and outages the lessons to be learnt seem obvious in retrospect. I’d strongly suggest you consider network resiliency as part of your airtime going forward.

Please also get in touch to see how we’ve helped many customers in this area with our competitive multi-carrier tariffs.