Orange Botswana, the cell-phone network, unreservedly apologized to its customers Tuesday over the network interruption that occurred last week that was largely blamed on the “corruption on its software”.
The network went out for more than 12 hours on Friday last week leaving about half of its estimated 700,000 subscribers in the southern parts of the country stranded.
“We were carrying out a routine up date on our network’s hub and our software got corrupted,” spokesperson of the network, Karabo Thabiwe, said.
The network went down at 11 pm on Thursday night until 14:45 hrs on Friday, while the technicians were trying to upgrade its network so that it can provide more services and be able to communicate with other cell-phone networks.
“What happened during that time meant that people could not call, re-charge, send text or browse through the Orange network as all the information in the system was affected. We could not get any signal indicating an inter connectivity as is normally the case,” he said, adding that limited services were resumed on Friday afternoon while full service was on Saturday by 10.00 a.m.
The areas that were affected included Mahalapye to the southern tip of the country up to Ghantsi in the west. However, areas from Palapye up to Shakawe were operating normally because they are operating from an independent hub based in Francistown.
The problem prompted Orange Botswana to work around the clock. In a bid to get the network up and running again, it had to enlist the services of Ericsson’s global team ÔÇô the manufacturer of the software in Australia, Hungary and CanadaÔÇö and Orange head office in France to engage in some trouble-shooting exercise.
“Our people were working around the clock, and they were working with the Ericsson team and Orange head office in France.
“The three were having teleconferences every hour so that everybody could get an update,” Thabiwe said.
“Right now, we have instigated a detailed investigation so that we can get to know what exactly happened. The results of the report would be shared among all Orange affiliates around the world so that the same problem should not recur,” he added.