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Problem with receiving short code texts - Customer Service unable or unwilling to help

cantharella
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Since maybe the end of May, I've been having problems with receiving short code messages - mainly verification text, but also other texts from companies like Royal Mail, Paypal, my bank, and many others. It seems to be intermittent - some days those I receive them fine, but most days I don't.  Sometimes when I manually reset my network I get a few of those texts all at once - for example, today I did a reset and I got 10 texts all at once, including texts from Paypal and Royal Mail that I should have received yesterday. This is causing me a lot of problems when I need to login into something that uses 2 step authentication and the text is the only way to confirm your identity.

I've tried everything - reset my phone settings, updated software, deleted messages from my phone, upgraded iCloud, got a new Sim card, a new phone. I've been on the phone with Customer Service countless times. Not one person seemed like they had any clue what the problem is, so they just tried different things on a hit-and-miss basis. All they could do was to pass this over to the Technical Team, then I had to wait for them to call me. The Technical Team would call when I was not available, and if I missed their call I was unable to call them back because you can't ever call them directly. Any other company would leave a voicemail to say what number to call back on, but annoyingly this is not how the O2 operates. After a long wait for them to call me again, I was finally told that those messages are not being received by the O2 network, therefore they can't investigate. They can only investigate if the messages are received & fail on the O2 network. The guy couldn't answer my question why the network is unable to receive those messages - as they are sent from so many different sources it's impossible the fault is with the sender. He made this judgement based on one example of one message from Royal Mail that he checked if he could see it on the network. He didn't even ask me for more information, instead, he made a very clever suggestion that I contact the 'IT department' of those companies whose message I'm not getting - PayPal, Royal Mail, Google. Laughable! I asked him what I should do next - what he would do in my place. He just kept repeating they couldn't investigate blah blah. So no solution to the problem, as far as the O2 is concerned I'm just supposed to live with this issue.

After that I called 202 again, almost in tears at this point, to ask what my options are if I want to move to another network, as this seems to be the only remaining option to try. Unfortunately, I recently renewed my contract and got a new phone - mainly I was advised by Customer Service that my old phone might have been faulty and causing the issue. Of course, it turned out it wasn't a faulty phone, but as a result of this try-and-error approach from Customer Service, I'm now past the grace period on my new contract and would have to pay almost £700 if I want to move to another network! If they had told me they couldn't help me when I first reported the issue I would have not renewed my contract. They messed me about for 2 months only to tell me it's not their problem.

I don't know what to do now. I asked to make a complaint and someone was supposed to call me, but no one has yet. To say I'm extremely disappointed would be an understatement. I've been an O2 customer for many years. I don't want the hassle of moving to another network, and I feel I shouldn't be made to pay £700 for this when I was falsely made to believe a new phone would fix the problem. I don't understand how a company can behave like this - if they can't fix the actual issue they should offer some alternative solution to provide the full service the customer pays for.

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Richard15
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I have a similar problem but with sending and receiving all messages in my home area. When I am driving back home, I am getting empty messages, always at the same place. It actually happens when I approach the network antenna close to my home area. This issue persists for about two months. The O2 has been reported a few times and they took some steps to check and repair the system. As a result of their action, I could send just one text from home. After that, the former issue returned back. I am losing my time and money because I am unable to receive bank texts to confirm the business transactions. It causes lots of problems with the suppliers and cooperators. The O2 do nothing to solve this issue. But I am trying on my own. I recently upgraded the phone, having a hope that in the new handset the issue will disappear forever. I had a right but only for a while. I could send and receive the texts for an hour, and then the same problem has been returned to my new handset as well. I think that I used to have an issue with the old phone, and after transferring all data to the new phone, the problem returned back. In my opinion, the network operator, in this case, the O2 should have solutions to prevent such situations. They cannot expect that the problem will disappear itself. 

I am going to push them up and I will demand compensation from them. The court case is under preparation on its way. 

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madasaf1sh
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@cantharella 

 

Have you got poor signal in your area? What phone are you using? 

 

Have you spoken to the likes of PayPal or Royal Mail?? , as like email, if it isnt seen on the receiving infrastructure, their really is nothing that can be done, so the first place to start is the companies sending the message. 
These messages  are also not guaranteed to be delivered (and the financial institutions such as PayPal have been told to stop using them by the FCA as they are not secure and not guaranteed to be delivered) they are best endeavours only.

Current Phone: Motorola Razr 5g
I also have a Planet Computers Gemini

I work in IT as an Enterprise Messaging and Collaboration Tools Administrator (Office 365, Slack and much much more) and manage hardware both Mobile and Desktop / laptop, my desk is a bit like PC World

--
We are all customers and dont have access to any o2 accounts





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MI5
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This is a common issue with O2 especially if you have a zero spend cap.

I've moved all my 2FA over to my EE number as they always get delivered very quickly to that number.

I have no affiliation whatsoever with O2 or any subsidiary companies. Comments posted are entirely of my own opinion. This is not Customer Service so we are unable to help with account specific issues.

Currently using:
OnePlus 6 (O2 & Sfr), Z3 Tablet (Three UK), iPhone 8+ (EE)
Message 4 of 11
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cantharella
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Thank you for your reply, but I don't think this is the solution. This issue affects text messages from at least 20 different companies, from global giants like Google or Paypal to small businesses, like my dentist. I know those text are not guaranteed but until about 2 months ago I NEVER had any problems receiving them, not once. How likely it is that all those senders that have nothing in common suddenly started having problems with sending me their messages? Zero probability. Besides, that guy from the Technical Team said that those messages are not reaching the O2 network based on ONE example - I told him I should have received a message from Royal Mail, and he said he couldn't see that message on the network. But I can't 100% guarantee that I really that message was really sent to me on that day, this was just based on the fact that I was expecting a delivery from Royal Mail and they always send a text. Maybe that one time they didn't. How can you know for sure what day & at what time you DIDN'T receive a message?

Also, sometimes (not always) when I reset network I do get a bunch of messages that got stuck somewhere - which proves they ARE reaching the O2 network, they are just not reaching me.

 

The signal is very good in my area. There's another O2 phone in my household, no issues with that one. I also never had any issues until now. 

 

I'm using iPhone 12. Previously was using iPhone XR, the problems started on that one. The other phone in my household - iPhone XR - works fine.

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cantharella
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Thanks for your reply. I don't have a spending cap, or any other cap on anything whatsoever, never had, never wanted to have it. This was one of the things Customer Service looked into, so it's been checked by multiple people.

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cantharella
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Gosh, that sounds awful! It is a really serious issue when it affects your business. It's mind-boggling that O2 just think it's not their problem. I hope you get it sorted, one way or another!

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madasaf1sh
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@cantharella 

 

If i had know it was the iPhone 12 then I would have posted this, SMS on the iPhone 12 is a know issue and affects networks around the world, but Apple dont really care, but it get fixed supposedly in IOS 15: 

 

iPhone 12 and 12 Pro Users Complain of Missing SMS Text Messages and Message Notifications - MacRumo...

 

Current Phone: Motorola Razr 5g
I also have a Planet Computers Gemini

I work in IT as an Enterprise Messaging and Collaboration Tools Administrator (Office 365, Slack and much much more) and manage hardware both Mobile and Desktop / laptop, my desk is a bit like PC World

--
We are all customers and dont have access to any o2 accounts





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cantharella
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It started on XR after I had it for almost 2 years, and not even after a software update, just completed out of the blue. I don’t think it makes any sense for this issue to be caused by the phone or the software - but of course the O2 are eager to blame it on anything other than themselves.

 

Also, I have no problems receiving texts from private numbers - it only affects short code messages. 

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Edward1234
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OMG. I just experienced this same problem. Cannot receive any texts on my mobile only some from O2. I found out that last week when I tried to log on to NHS app and download covid pass. I really got stressed when I couldn't get code to NHS app especially I was going abroad next two days. I was trying get help from NHS helpline but obvious I couldn't get any help from them when I found out that I cannot receive any texts on my mobile. My blood pressure was 170/110. Next day, it was Sunday went to O2 shop, they tried to help me, changed SIM card, and all actions changed nothing. Later called to O2 help line but they said my 02 SIM card needs 24 hours to fully activation. Fortunately during these actions I could get codes from NHS app to download my covid pass. Suddenly I received 30 codes from NHS app. After 10 minutes  stopped receiving texts again. I am abroad now and back to UK on Monday and don't know what to do. I have a different 

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