M1 broadband complaints continue despite telco saying services restored

PHOTO: The Straits Times

Frustrated M1 users across Singapore continued to report Internet outages on Wednesday, more than 24 hours after the disruptions started, despite the telco announcing in an early morning update that it has completed its fibre system maintenance and all fibre services have been fully restored.

“If your fibre connection continues to be offline, do switch off and on your ONT (modem) and router to reconnect your devices,” M1 said at 6am on its

" target="_blank">Facebook page on Wednesday, apologising for the inconvenience.

At 3.30am, it said it had commenced the “urgent” fibre system maintenance, and customers may experience “intermittent fibre connectivity disruptions” during that period. The maintenance was done during the off-peak period to keep disruptions to a minimum for the majority of its unaffected customers.

M1 first reported the problem at 8am on Tuesday in the same Facebook post, noting that users in some areas in western, central and eastern Singapore may be affected, before stating in an 11.05am update that “only a specific group” was experiencing the disruptions and most of the customers were still able to connect to its fibre broadband.

By 7.30pm on Tuesday, its engineers had “identified and isolated” the issue which was causing the disruptions, although M1 did not say what the issue was.

According to online service tracker Downdetector , which logs Internet outages, the problem began at around 4.30am on Tuesday, before complaints peaked at 9am with more than 1,500 reports.

The reports tapered down during the wee hours of Wednesday morning, with only 69 made at 3.48am, but spiked at 4.06am with over 1,600 reports while the M1 maintenance was ongoing.

Downdetector recorded about 579 reports of M1 problems at 6.33am on Wednesday, before complaints climbed to more than 1,680 at 8.18am.

Number of reports on the Downdetector website as at 8.18am on Wednesday:

PHOTO: Downdetector

Comments on Facebook and Downdetector indicated that users were still experiencing a service outage as at 8.25am - despite restarting their modem and router - in areas including Jurong West, Bukit Batok, Yishun, Choa Chu Kang, Clementi, Toa Payoh, Bishan, Ang Mo Kio, Balestier, Bedok, Joo Chiat, Hougang, Sengkang, Punggol, Serangoon, Paya Lebar and Ubi.

On the other hand, those that have managed to get back online included netizens in Simei, Aljunied and Sembawang, according to their comments on Wednesday morning.

[13 May, 2:50pm update] We have rectified a network issue that affected fibre broadband internet traffic service. The...

Posted by M1 on Monday, May 11, 2020

The telco was bought out in April 2019 by Keppel Corp and Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), which publishes The Business Times. Konnectivity, which is 80 per cent owned by Keppel Corp and 20 per cent owned by SPH, acquired an 81 per cent stake in M1 while the remaining 19 per cent interest is held by Keppel's subsidiary Keppel Telecommunications & Transportation.

M1’s outage comes nearly a month after thousands of StarHub users experienced two network service disruptions on April 15, before the telco apologised to customers and offered them a one-time rebate on their monthly home broadband fee.

StarHub’s disruptions were attributed to network equipment failure and a domain name server issue.

This article was first published in The Business Times. Permission required for reproduction.