France's Largest Cellphone Network Crashes

Jul 9, 2012
Originally published on July 9, 2012 7:12 am
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LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Our last word in business today takes us to France, where 26 million customers lost mobile phone service for nine hours on Friday. The country's largest cellphone network, France Telecom, crashed. For subscribers, that meant no calls, no texts and no mobile Internet. So our last word is: missed connections.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Taxi drivers lost touch with their dispatchers, executives ran late to meetings, and many customers were not happy. Those that managed to find a way online were quick to voice their displeasure on social media.

Not everyone was upset, though. A few relished the opportunity to be at least temporarily untethered from technology. Among those untethered was the chief executive of French Telecom, who was relaxing at his country home when the crisis hit.

WERTHEIMER: It took his colleagues some time to get in touch with him. Of course, his cellphone didn't work. And to add to the problem, his office could not track down his land line number.

And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

MONTAGNE: And I'm Renee Montagne. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.