Goodbye Orange!

I’ve been with Orange for what must be in the region of 16 years.  In fact, I’ve been with Orange since before they were Orange, back when they were Rabbit.

Recently I’ve been getting increasingly annoyed by how poor their data connection is.  At home, we pay a lot of money for the best possible connection we can have (50meg cable from Virgin Media) so why do I put up with such a poor connection from Orange?

If you start Googling, it seems relatively easy to find information on how much 3G coverage each provider has, but not so much about how fast each provider was.  I recall a few years back that Vodafone has won some kind of award for their speeds, but couldn’t find any information on speeds now, so I thought I’d try and generate the data myself.

With the help of hemorrdroids fans, I started mapping out data speeds around London and the UK.  I even got Vodafone, Three and GiffGaff SIM’s for myself to test.  It was quite apparent very quickly that Orange and T-Mobile had incredibly poor speeds compared to the others whilst Three and GiffGaff seemed to be emerging as the quicker networks.  It was surprising how often Orange wouldn’t even connect to run a speed test, while the other networks managed just fine.

I’d heard a few people saying Three had terrible customer service and for the first few days of my testing, they had some kind of issue that wouldn’t allow me to connect to anything Google, which would obviously be a bit of a problem.  Luckily this was corrected and Three seemed to be the obvious choice for me to switch to, with average speeds two or three times better than Orange.

The next issue would be the number.  With 14 months left on my Orange contract, I wouldn’t be able to get my number off them, so I decided to head to eBay to buy a nice memorable one.  Nurcan’s old Legend is currently forwarding everything from my old number to new… in 14 months we’ll see if I still need my old number.