Telstra Is Giving Away Unlimited Mobile Data Today

Yesterday afternoon, Telstra suffered a massive outage across its 3G and 4G networks which left thousands of people without mobile phone coverage. The telco has since issued an apology along with a promise of “free data” for all Telstra Mobile customers. Here are the details.

This post originally appeared on Lifehacker Australia.

Telstra has announced it will give away free data this Sunday (14 February) as compensation for Tuesday’s mass outage. The free data will be offered to all Telstra Mobile customers with any excess data usage automatically deducted from users’ bills.

“While the outage was short in duration we fully realise the impact it had on our customers, which is why we are offering all of our customers a day of free mobile data this Sunday,” Telstra explained in a statement.

To receive the free data, customers are not required to do anything — instead, the telco will automatically switch off data billing for every mobile customer (no word on whether this includes resellers like Boost Mobile.) Normal billing will resume on Monday 15 February.

The country-wide outage was reportedly caused by a network core switch restart following technical issues with a major connection point in the network. This resulted in significant congestion across the mobile network and problems with customers’ mobile voice and data nationally.

Telstra’s chief operations officer Kate McKenzie said she was “incredibly disappointed the outage occurred and deeply sorry for the inconvenience we caused.”

A free day of unlimited mobile data sounds like a pretty fun challenge to us. You could see how many Netflix series you can binge-watch over LTE in 24 hours. Or maybe go on a free app downloading frenzy with your phone’s WiFi disabled. Or keep refreshing Lifehacker every second. Might as well get your money’s worth, eh?

On the downside, we suspect there will be a lot of congestion on Telstra’s network come Sunday due to a spike in usage. Ironically, this makeup gift could end up causing more complaints than the original outage. Whoops.

Meanwhile, upstart rival Kogan Mobile has slashed 70 per cent off its 30-day prepaid mobile plans in the wake of the Telstra snafu. (Story here.)

“Need a reliable network? Kogan Mobile is firing on all cylinders and currently has a 70% Off promo,” Ruslan Kogan teased via Twitter. Cheeky.

[Via Telstra]

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