T-Mobile fell victim to a massive partial network outage on Thursday, which affected users in parts of 12 states and Washington, D.C. The full list of states that had affected users includes Virginia, New York, Pennsylvania, California, New Jersey, Florida, Missouri, Washington, D.C., Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maryland, Ohio, and Texas. The outage left customers unable to do much except place and receive phone calls. Major spikes in reports of network issues could be observed over the past 48 hours, but seem to have mostly calmed down now. While the major outage seems to have been taken care of, intermittent reports are still coming in of network issues like slow data speeds and problems with calling and texting. The most recent report was from late Friday night, as of this writing, and came from California.
The worst of the outage reportedly came at about 10 AM Eastern Standard Time on Thursday, when over 1,000 outage reports came in nationwide within the hour. When the outage was at its worst, close to 27% of those reporting said that they had no service for any cellular activities at all, while around 19% could not connect phone calls, and 53% were unable to use any mobile data. T-Mobile has not made any sort of official statement regarding the large-scale outage, and frustrated customers reaching out on social media were relegated to private messaging or told to contact their carrier through other means.
An outage of this scale, especially one with aftereffects lasting this long, does not bode well for T-Mobile as it grapples with other carriers to win over subscribers. The outage comes amid T-Mobile's #getoutotofthered promotion, wherein Verizon customers who bring an eligible device to T-Mobile can have the device subsidy and other switching costs paid off. This outage may give current customers of the nation's largest carrier some serious pause if they were considering jumping ship for T-Mobile. The timing of the colossal network issue is also interesting because it comes just as T-Mobile begins actually rolling out some of the 600MHz spectrum that it won in the recent FCC incentive auction, albeit in very limited areas and on a non-public testing basis only.