SingTel explains mio TV outage, offers refund

Singapore’s SingTel has offered a one month refund to subscribers of the Sports Pack bouquet on its IPTV service ‘mio TV’, following a serious service outage on May 13th which saw viewers miss some of the action-packed final games of the season in the English Premier League.

Fans’ viewing was interrupted at crucial moments in the season’s climax by frozen or blanked-out screens, leading to a substantial customer backlash on social media and other channels, with the country’s Media Development Authority also taking an interest in the complaints.

Over the next few days, subscribers to the Sports Pack will receive a letter advising them that SGD 34.90 (US$ 27.28) will be credited to their account, equal to one month’s worth of subscription to the package.

SingTel took pains shortly after the incident to clarify what happened, telling customers: “An unprecedented number of viewers tuned in to the season finale of the League. At its peak, there were ten matches playing concurrently.

“Due to the close links between two of the matches a high number of customers switched repeatedly between two channels at unusually high frequency. The switching volumes were five times higher than the previous peaks. This surge caused our system to slow and led to viewing problems for some customers.”

SingTel adds that it is moving urgently to enhance the switching system to ensure future peaks are accommodated, and that the viewing experience is up to the standards expected by customers, who will be switching on in their droves shortly to watch live coverage of the London 2012 Olympic games.

The telco generated SGD 29mn from its IPTV service in the first quarter of this year, while its customer base grew by 15,000 to reach 368,000 by the end of March.

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