Telstra has apologised to customers affected by an internet outage, the fourth service failure from the telco in as many months. A Telstra spokesman confirmed its NBN and ADSL users might be having difficulty connecting to the internet on Friday. "We apologise to customers and are doing everything possible to restore services as quickly as possible," the spokesman said. Related: Telstra says system shutdown was due to'embarrassing human error' Irate customers voiced their frustrations on social media. Telstra, you are an absolute joke.
Recently embattled telecommunications carrier Telstra has provided an update on the network engineering review into its three national outages this year, with plans to increase capacity of its signalling channels, add extra traffic management protection, improve capacity for its home location register, and heighten its "awareness plan". According to chief operating officer Kate McKenzie, Telstra is seeking the advice of both internal and external engineering experts, including from Cisco, Ericsson, and Juniper. "Our initial review has confirmed the recent incidents were not related, although two of the disruptions were due to delays in processing the registration of mobile devices ... we are absolutely committed to getting to the bottom of these incidents, and are taking all of the necessary steps to minimise the risk of it happening again," McKenzie said at the CommsDay Summit in Sydney on Monday morning. "We are well into a thorough review of the network. I am leading this review, and it involves our own specialist teams as well as external experts from around the world.
Telstra's Friday outage of ADSL and National Broadband Network (NBN) connections were due to a "complex" network management device fault, while Sunday's mobile data incident was caused by faulty hardware. "Following disruption to some NBN voice and data services and ADSL services today, all services were restored just before 7pm EST this evening," a Telstra spokesperson said in a statement on Friday night. "The issue we identified is extremely complex, but in simple terms, there was a fault with the device that manages the interaction between our network and all of the different types of customer modems." The spokesperson added that Telstra will be providing more data as compensation. "We understand this has been frustrating for affected customers, and we will be providing them with some additional data.
Telstra mobile and fixed-line customers are complaining of yet another outage hitting their voice capabilities. The complaints were made largely over Twitter and broadband enthusiast forum Whirlpool, with the outage appearing to be sporadically affecting customers across Australia. "We are experiencing intermittent voice call failures and connection delays on our fixed and mobile networks -- predominantly in Victoria and Tasmania, but impacting other states sporadically," a Telstra spokesperson told ZDNet. "We will update with further information as it becomes available." The voice outage comes less than a week after the telco experienced an hours-long national mobile data and voice outage, which resulted in CEO Andrew Penn offering free data for all customers on Sunday, April 3. "We are still investigating how the service disruption occurred, but our early findings show we had a problem that triggered a significant number of customers to be disconnected from the network, and as they were all automatically reconnecting at the same time, this caused congestion," Penn said.
Machine learning is being employed by Telstra behind the scenes in a bid to predict and better deal with distressed customers. Andrew Condron, Telstra's general manager of analytics, told ZDNet that the telco aims to intervene before a customer's issue causes further frustration, calling the concept a "proactive reach-out initiative". "We know the customers in any large organisation can get frustrated when they ring in to have an issue resolved," Condron said. "That issue they think is resolved, but it doesn't turn out to be resolved, so they ring back in again and they get passed around. "So we're trying to really address that issue in a much more proactive sense."