Vodafone Fiji has reported a major surge in network traffic given the high reliance placed on the use of technology by businesses as well as individual at this time. The abnormally high network traffic on the Vodafone network is not an isolated case with networks in other countries also reporting similar surge in traffic. 

In the USA,
AT&T, Verizon and Sprint reported spikes in voice calls as restriction
imposed by COVID 19 outbreak resulted in people turning to more traditional
means of communication (Source: https://www.fiercewireless.com/wireless/mobile-voice-usage-dials-up-for-at-t-verizon-as-americans-stay-home).
India in the meantime has reported slow internet across the country (Source:
India Times Online).

In Australia,
despite having a National Broadband Network (NBN), is facing high utilization
and service degradation across the country (Source: https://thenewdaily.com.au/life/tech/2020/03/16/nbn-coronavirus-congestion/).  Content providers like Netflix are also
lowering video quality as more and more people are confined to their homes
putting a lot of load on bandwidth and access to internet as they seek
entertainment options at home (Source: https://gadgets.ndtv.com/entertainment/news/netflix-india-lower-video-quality-coronavirus-pandemic-internet-load-2199709.

The Vodafone
Fiji network is also not spared as there is more reliance on network for
businesses as they seek “work from home” alternatives for their staff.  During normal times, most of these businesses
would be connected through dedicated links in CBDs when employees are at work,
hence distributing the mobile traffic load. 
However, as more employees work from home, this invariably skews the
traffic to the homes over the mobile networks. 

Additionally,
schools have closed in response to COVID-19. 
There is a significant increase in home usage due to the students being
confined to their homes because of restricted movement.

These are
unprecedented times unlike any other before. 
Mobile networks in general are not geared towards such spikes during a
sudden and unexpected event impacting the entire nation and world
simultaneously. 

Vodafone Fiji
has also provided to its entire customer base, the V-CARE package that entitles
them to free 2GB data, 200 minutes of calls and free 1000 SMS to cushion the
impact of COVID-19 on the general public. As a result of this, there may be a sudden
surge in network traffic in some areas leading to network quality degradation.

Vodafone Fiji is consistently monitoring network
quality and performance to ensure its users have consistent reliable
connectivity as we try and navigate through this difficult period. Network optimization works
continue to be carried out in heavily populated areas to minimize the impact of
surge. Traffic shaping rules have been applied on the network to ensure all
customers get a consistent service even if they are in different areas.

Despite the
proactive actions taken by Vodafone, we still expect ad-hoc congestion on the
radio network and base station levels when there is a sudden spike in demand
due to an unprecedented event, important news or advisory being issued. During
these instances, customers will experience certain levels of service
degradation.

We will continue
to monitor network performance and adjust network parameters accordingly to
ensure that we provide optimum customer experience.

Vodafone Fiji is also asking the people to be reasonable and keep updated with more important news on COVID-19 and take care of their health and wellbeing.

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