IDA investigates latest Starhub outage; telco says services restored at 7pm

SINGAPORE - Starhub's 10-hour outage may have also affected ComfortDelGro's taxi bookings and cashless transactions, reported The Straits Times.

About half of its 15,000 taxis were affected by the disruption to the mobile network as they were unable to process bookings and accept cashless transactions.

The Straits Times reported that Ms Tammy Tan, group corporate communications officer at ComfortDelGro, had said in a statement that "the service disruptions, which first started at about 11am, also affected Starhub mobile users trying to book a taxi via our app."

Affected services have been restored as of 7pm, said The Straits Times.

Meanwhile, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) has said that it is investigating the latest outage to Starhub's mobile voice service.

In its latest statement, Starhub said it "has fully restored an intermittent 3G and 2G mobile voice and 3G data service interruption that had affected some customers in certain areas of Singapore earlier today. 4G Voice, 4G and 2G data services were not affected."

Customers on Starhub's Facebook page had complained of reception issues since 8am although a statement by Starhub said "the intermittent issue with our 2G and 3G mobile voice service which started at 9.30am in affected areas was fully resolved by 4.30pm. Our 3G data service which was temporarily unavailable for some customers from 2.30pm was fully resolved by 5.30pm."

Starhub had said in its third Facebook update at 6.17pm that its mobile voice services were fully restored, nearly 10 hours after the first complaint on its Facebook page.

However in an earlier update posted at 4.30pm, Starhub said that its mobile data services were not affected. That update attracted over 600 comments in two hours, with many users insisting that their data services were down.

Similarly, for its first update about the mobile voice outage, Starhub had emphasised that its mobile data services was not affected, attracting criticisms immediately.

Starhub also said in its first update that the problem was confined to the eastern and western parts of Singapore, but users gave feedback on Starhub's Facebook page that it was otherwise. Areas such as Ang Mo Kio, Orchard, Tampines and Woodlands were reportedly affected too.

Starhub has apologised for the inconvience and are investigating the root cause of the incident.

"We provided our customers with regular updates via our official social media channels since the start of the incident. We apologise to all affected customers for any inconvenience caused.  We are currently investigating the root cause of this incident."

In Jan 2013, telco M1 was fined a record $1.5 million for a service outage that lasted up to 71 hours, which stands as the worst mobile network failure Singapore has experienced to date.