TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Amid Crisis, Phones Jammed, But Text Messages Worked

Amid Crisis, Phones Jammed, But Text Messages Worked

Monty Solomon (
Fri, 8 Jul 2005 19:22:08 -0400


Like many London residents, when Marianne Dunn heard about the bomb
attacks, she immediately tried to call colleagues on their cellphones
to see if they were all right. But all the computer trainer got were
busy signals. Then Ms. Dunn heard on the radio that authorities
advised people to use text messages via cellphones in lieu of calls.
"I got the message through using text," she said.

A sudden surge of voice traffic following yesterday's attacks
overloaded many British cellphone networks for at least three hours.
The calling volume was so high that even parts of the landline
networks were congested: The network of BT Group PLC, the largest
U.K. landline operator, experienced disruption, as did that of Cable &
Wireless PLC, another large phone company.

Several newer communication tools appeared to hold up better,
including text messages sent via cellphone keypads, wireless email and
instant messaging sent over computers. And some state-of-the-art,
"third-generation" cellphone networks, which are equipped to send and
receive video images and music as well as calls, also continued
working. Some customers even recorded images of the bomb damage on
their cellphone cameras and sent them to media outlets.

The communications problems indicate that, at least in Britain,
cellphone-system operators may not have learned many lessons from the
Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the U.S. And landline networks,
which previously were thought to be more robust, also face
challenges. After the World Trade Center attacks, landline phones
generally held up in New York, though there were some congestion
problems, while cellphone networks were clogged.,,SB112077406111780071-h53OpBx5tN92js2XzLVusfCU43w_20060708,00.html

Post Followup Article Use your browser's quoting feature to quote article into reply
Go to Next message: Kelly Daniels: "June Commentary on Cellular Providers Features"
Go to Previous message: Monty Solomon: "Florida Man Charged For Stealing Wi-Fi"
Next in thread: Isaiah Beard: "Re: Amid Crisis, Phones Jammed, But Text Messages Worked"
May be reply: Isaiah Beard: "Re: Amid Crisis, Phones Jammed, But Text Messages Worked"
TELECOM Digest: Home Page