The outage affecting O2's network has raised questions over the readiness of the UK's mobile infrastructure to deal with the huge influx of visitors expected to require mobile internet access during the Olympic Games.
Operators have claimed to have put numerous plans in place to deal with the strain that networks are expected to come under by analysts have voiced concerns over whether this will prove enough.
"The huge influx of visitors to London ahead of the games, will cause network traffic spikes, putting pressure on the UK's mobile networks, which already have a poor reputation compared to others in Western Europe," said Ovum telecoms analyst Steven Hartley.
"While UK mobile operators claim to be prepared, they have not yet given indication of the scale of their plans."
Hartley warned that while mobile upgrades in areas known to come under strain would undoubtedly help, there was still the potential for problems.
"If there is a major public transport failure, the spilling over of people from a location where high network traffic has been anticipated to less well-prepared peripheral cells could prove disastrous," he said.
Despite these concerns O2 itself has in the past touted its plans to ensure its network will be able to cope with the event. The firm's London 2012 chief operating officer, Derek McManus, explained some of its preparations in a blog post last year.
"The mobile industry is expecting to cater for 80 million mobile phone users in 100 different event locations next summer. We know that the nature of sporting means that we see huge spikes in traffic at key moments," he wrote.
"As an industry, we have been planning for over two years and O2 alone has invested £50m in London 2012 - increasing capacity on the current network and building new temporary sites across the country."
When contacted by V3 for information on whether anything would be changed in the wake of the outage this week, O2 did not respond.
The incident is a huge embarrassment for O2, as the eyes of the world turn their attention on the UK for the Olympics, with the event seen as a chance for UK businesses to shine.
"The Olympics are hugely important for UK plc," said chief executive of BT Operate, Roel Louwhoff, said at an event attended by V3 on Tuesday, before the outage took place.
"Large corporations will be here watching the Games to see what we [the UK] can deliver."
The silver lining for O2, its customers and the UK as a whole is that at least the outage has happened now, not during the event itself which begins in two weeks time.
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