By December 2, 2009

3 suspends mobile broadband sales in poorly connected areas


On our last podcast, my old co-host Chris Oldroyd joined us. Due to the severe weather England was suffering Chris was reduced to using his 3 mifi service. When I say reduced, the service was quite impressive however the notable decline in quality was evident. 3 had served Chris well. However, no soon have we good feeling for 3 that they take it away as with the following article from Mobile Today.

All channels to advise customers against buying MBB in areas with poor connectivity

3 has suspended mobile broadband sales in certain geographical areas until connectivity improves.

The move is part of a broader strategy by the operator to better manage the  explosive growth of its mobile broadband (MBB) offering which has seen 3 increase its market share of MBB to 40%.

3 met with its direct, indirect and retail channels this week to explain how the suspension will work. Under the new procedure sales staff will begin any sales pitch for MBB by checking connectivity levels first. If customers are found to be in areas with poor connectivity, sales channels must advise customers against buying mobile broadband until connectivity is improved.

Sales targets and commissions in these areas have also been changed to take account of the new sales focus.

Speaking to Mobile, Marc Allera, sales and marketing director for 3UK, said: ‘There has been a steady drip of customer feedback which tells us we need to be more honest and open and transparent about MBB capacity and this initiative is at the heart of that.’

He added: ‘There are a small number of sites where there are a large number of customers and to take new customers would not be the right thing.’

Allera said the new sales process is a temporary measure whilst 3 builds more capacity.

‘This is just a moment in time’, he said, pointing to 3’s drive to add 150 new sites a week to its network. Allera said 3’s network coverage will increase from  92.5% coverage to 98% coverage by the end of 2010 with sites doubling from around 7000 sites to 13000 sites.

Allera said the new rules affect a ‘small percentage of areas’ which he said are nationwide and can vary. He attributed the capacity problem largely to high sales of 3 in certain areas.

He insisted sellers in these areas will not lose out. ‘We have adjusted the targets so that the stores in these areas are not hit in the pocket.’

Posted in: Phones

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Seasoned tech blogger. Host of the Tech Addicts podcast.
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