Carrier O2 network, UK

johnmed

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 14, 2009
122
71
uk
Hi all.

As long as I’ve had an iPhone the carrier I’ve chosen hasn’t supported Visual Voicemail or Apple Watch cellular functionality.

I just switched from Three (who I’ve been with for a long time) to O2 essentially for Apple Watch cellular support, and yeah, it supports the above, but the data speeds are appalling where I live and in the nearest city. I cannot even watch YouTube in 720p.

What are others’ experiences?

I think I may have to cancel O2.
 
Last edited:

redrog

macrumors 6502
Feb 26, 2008
335
53
Depends where you are of course but I also had issues with O2 Moved to EE and never looked back.
 

Thoradin

macrumors member
May 18, 2020
60
62
Yorkshire, England
I moved from Three to O2 on Black Friday and the O2 network is amazing in terms of speeds and signal strength, so much better than Three.
Of course, results vary in different areas of the country. But up here in Yorkshire, 50 miles from a big city the service from Three was appalling.
 

johnmed

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 14, 2009
122
71
uk
I moved from Three to O2 on Black Friday and the O2 network is amazing in terms of speeds and signal strength, so much better than Three.
Of course, results vary in different areas of the country. But up here in Yorkshire, 50 miles from a big city the service from Three was appalling.
this is the annoying thing; service and data speeds are regional. Makes making a decision that little bit more difficult.
 

Thoradin

macrumors member
May 18, 2020
60
62
Yorkshire, England
this is the annoying thing; service and data speeds are regional. Makes making a decision that little bit more difficult.
It really does. Though what surprises me is that the nearest tower for all 4 networks is on the roof of the BT exchange, which is less than a 2 minute walk from my house.
Yet with O2 I have full 4G signal and with Three it never had over 1 bar, though towards the end it was more common to have nothing at all.
 

The-Real-Deal82

macrumors G3
Jan 17, 2013
8,730
14,259
Wales, United Kingdom
I think I will be leaving O2 after 12 years with them. My wife is currently in chat to them to get a new iPhone and they have no interest in price matching and are hideously expensive. Their coverage is pretty crap too of late.

She found an 11 Pro on EE over 24 months with 20GB data, £350 upfront and £35p/m. Gave the link to O2 and they came back with 11 Pro, over 36 months, 15GB data, £400 upfront and £48p/m. The robot in the call centre said they can’t get any lower but ‘O2 deliver the best quality and customer service’. Like that even matters when you are getting the same phone and a signal!

I don’t think O2 will exist in another 5 years. Totally out of touch.
 
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Thoradin

macrumors member
May 18, 2020
60
62
Yorkshire, England
When looking for new and cheap deals check out mobiles.co.uk my other half picked up a silly deal from them with an XR for £33 a month and no upfront with 60GB of data. I have seen their deals on other iPhones regularly beat the network prices, just don’t rely on their cash back deals and look at the price per month before it’s deducted as a better indication.
I’m a sim only user myself as I find it provides better value and can usually be switched whenever you need it.
 

ruka.snow

macrumors 6502
Jun 6, 2017
418
1,047
o2 is the best around my area and the areas I go. It really depends on who has coverage in your area and on the device. No phone gets a signal inside a house in my area, but that is most likely the 3-5 foot thick walls(depending on part of house).
 

Ifti

macrumors 68020
Dec 14, 2010
2,403
520
UK
Have been with O2 for many years and have been happy with the coverage etc. No plans to change any time soon.
 

jr866gooner

macrumors 68000
Aug 24, 2013
1,517
332
I think I will be leaving O2 after 12 years with them. My wife is currently in chat to them to get a new iPhone and they have no interest in price matching and are hideously expensive. Their coverage is pretty crap too of late.

She found an 11 Pro on EE over 24 months with 20GB data, £350 upfront and £35p/m. Gave the link to O2 and they came back with 11 Pro, over 36 months, 15GB data, £400 upfront and £48p/m. The robot in the call centre said they can’t get any lower but ‘O2 deliver the best quality and customer service’. Like that even matters when you are getting the same phone and a signal!

I don’t think O2 will exist in another 5 years. Totally out of touch.
I left o2 simply because I was out priced for what I now know was a shoddy network! I'm sim only with Vodafone at the moment and I get far better signal speeds in comparison most places I go and work.

I must say though if I wasnt sim only Vodafone is very expensive with a phone included in the plan but I think it's about timing of offers that come up.

Last year I grabbed sim only deal 100gb data deal for £23. This year went unlimited amfor only £24...

May go monthly iphone payments along with sim only as my phone is only £14 as a separate payment right now..
 

i-Liam

macrumors regular
Sep 10, 2016
108
202
It depends were you live. O2 and Vodafone share mast sites. In the west of the country Vodafone are responsible for the sites, and in the east O2 are responsible. Both networks obviously prioritise their own networks in the areas they control. O2 also has a low amount of spectrum in comparison to EE and Vodafone. For some people, particularly in the west of country, O2 is a pretty poor network.
 
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Slippery Gimp

macrumors regular
Aug 2, 2008
133
326
Leeds, UK
O2’s upgrade deals for me we’re/are an absolute joke. 36 month contract?! Whatever. I got my last iPhone on O2 through mobilephonesdirect. Much cheaper deals with bigger data allowances.
 

The-Real-Deal82

macrumors G3
Jan 17, 2013
8,730
14,259
Wales, United Kingdom
O2’s upgrade deals for me we’re/are an absolute joke. 36 month contract?! Whatever. I got my last iPhone on O2 through mobilephonesdirect. Much cheaper deals with bigger data allowances.
Indeed. I have never seen a decent deal directly from O2. All my upgrades have been through third parties as O2 are just not interested in matching or being competitive.
 

bp1000

macrumors 65816
Jul 7, 2011
1,340
47
Definitely dump o2.
I’ve never had a good experience with them for data.

three are actually just ok. I too was with them for a long time but they are lazy with capacity and rely on a measly 5mhz of 800mhz band to blanket 4g outside of cities In far too many towns. Plus they have capacity issues.

Having said that they do seem to deliver between 5Mbps and 20Mbps in most circumstances.

I moved to EE who are clearly better data wise. 2-5x the speeds in most cases and a way lower ping and better stability.

Go with EE or try vodaphone who are actually pretty good these days
 

johnmed

macrumors regular
Original poster
Sep 14, 2009
122
71
uk
Yup. I’m with EE now. O2 not only have poor data speeds, their customer service is quite poor too.

To be fair to O2,I was up an running with them very quickly. EE, not so much, and they charge more for Watch support.
 
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yui4

macrumors 6502a
May 26, 2011
872
556
02 at my home address are blazing fast. For some reason EE barely gets any reception. Tbh I’m yet to find a bad spot for 02 in my city.

it’s a bit annoying as EE give a much more generous employee discount!

I will agree with with you that EE customer service is excellent and 02 is poor
 

Seanm87

macrumors 6502a
Oct 10, 2014
911
1,174
Funny how much it varies around the country. I’m with EE and find their coverage in the south west very poor. My work phone with Vodafone is excellent.
 

Thoradin

macrumors member
May 18, 2020
60
62
Yorkshire, England
I have a friend who is on EE and lives on the next street over. She has serious problems with calls dropping and not getting through to her.
It’s easier for me to just go round the corner and knock on the door than try to call her
 
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The-Real-Deal82

macrumors G3
Jan 17, 2013
8,730
14,259
Wales, United Kingdom
It’s appalling that in such a small island we have such poor network coverage on all networks. EE has the best network coverage in wales along with Vodafone apparently yet all carriers will lie to you just to get you to sign up.
 

Thoradin

macrumors member
May 18, 2020
60
62
Yorkshire, England
It’s appalling that in such a small island we have such poor network coverage on all networks. EE has the best network coverage in wales along with Vodafone apparently yet all carriers will lie to you just to get you to sign up.
What’s worse is the fluctuations of signal strength during a 2 year deal.
I took out a deal with 3 around 2 years ago and the signal was amazing everywhere in my area of Yorkshire. After around 18 months there was no longer any reception at my house or my university!
I spent 3 months fault finding with them and eventually moved to O2 after my son had been rushed to hospital and I had no idea for 3 hours as due to the signal issues nobody could contact me.
 
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