Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Communication Breakdown

Like thousands of others I received a text message from O2 yesterday morning to let me know that the online upgrade shop was now open for those of us eager to upgrade to the Apple iPhone 3G. Since my Sony Ericsson K750i was starting to show its age, and I'd never got around to getting an iPod, I thought this was an ideal opportunity to kill two birds with one stone.

Needless to say the O2 website was a little slugish as I navigated through the screens; typing in my current mobile number, waiting for an upgrade code to arrive via text (which for some reason I didn't have to enter onto the web page), and finally providing my credit card details before pressing the "Send" button. Well at least I think I pressed it, as there was no immediate feedback, just the same screen staring back at me. After a couple of minutes it jumped into life with the message "There has been a problem, blah, blah, blah, please try again". So I did; several times.

After a few similar outcomes I decided to do something useful with my life for an hour or so, before returning to find a page saying the upgrade shop was currently unavailable. Mmmm, surely O2 knew there was going to be a huge demand for this launch and could have taken steps to prevent the meltdown.

I checked back a few times during the day to find the same message, before finally being presented with a page saying that the entire stock of iPhones had sold out. Well, obviously I was unlucky; I'm sure that we all had an even chance. At least that's what I thought until I asked around colleagues and friends this morning; I know it's not a major controlled survey, but of the five people I know who tried to order yesterday, two were successful and three were not. Those two are currently customers of other networks, while the three losers are already with O2.

Obviously a coincidence.

No comments: