UK mobile operator O2 has said it will give compensation for last week's outage that left hundreds of thousands of its customers without access to voice, text or data services for more than 24 hours.
The company said in a blog post on Wednesday that it will give its contract customers 10 percent off of their July rental amount — equivalent to three days' free rental. The reduction will be applied automatically to September's bill for people who were
"The issue we had was unprecedented, and we recognise that this caused inconvenience and frustration to those impacted over that one-day period," the company said on its blog.
"We have now identified all those customers directly affected, and we and are giving them the equivalent of three days back for the disruption as a gesture of goodwill and to say sorry," it added.
Pay-as-you-go customers will get a 10-percent extra credit on their first top-up in September, also automatically — they do not have to do anything to get it.
In another goodwill gesture, O2 is giving all of its customers, even those who did not see a disruption, a £10 voucher to spend in its retail stores. It will be posted for download via the O2 Priority Moments app, but is only available during the month of September.
Despite the number of upset customers, the question of compensation was not a foregone conclusion. The UK’s Communication Ombudsman said last week that there is no precedent for issuing compensation for service outages such as this.
The decision is also a departure from O2’s past policy, as a company spokesman told ZDNet it hadn't historically offered compensation to customers that had services disrupted.
O2 said it will contact people via text message by 27 July with details of how the compensation works. Businesses with more than 10 connections will have the process explained by their account managers.