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Virgin Mobile - Poor Data service

On our wavelength

I'm a eSim customer on Virgin Mobile/Virgin Media.  Initially on EE, the move to Vodafone appeared to increase the data quality particularly during my commute to central London through East London.

2 weeks ago, I was migrated from Vodafone to O2.  I can tell by doing a network search and now O2 isn't showing.  The data signal on my phone is the poorest it has been in years (maybe 10 for me). Sometimes a good signal displays but nothing works. Somone one this forum said that Vodafone and O2 use the same transmission towers, but the Vodafone service was far superior to O2. I guess there is nothing I can do except put up with this poor service.  Are O2/Virgin Media going to spend any money on their mobile network or do I need to shop around?


Forum Team
Forum Team

Hi @Blackberryipod

Welcome back to the community

Sorry to hear of your coverage issues. Does the service coverage checker advise any issues in the areas you currently experiencing the problem? You can check your postcode here if needed. 


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Virgin Media Forums Agent

Very Insightful Person
Very Insightful Person

I've just written this in another thread

My dual SIM phone has a Vodafone and O2 SIM so I'm in a good position to judge.

O2 is slow in many areas. Telefónica have been trying to offload them for years and I suspect a lack of investment.

VMO2 seem more focused on broadband expansion and borrowing money to buy the likes of Talk Talk. I see no mention of money going into the mobile side of things.

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Hi, as it happens the service checker is showing an issue at my home address but not across the route my train takes to get to work. 

the coverage checkers shows a decent 4G connection across all of my route which is certainly not the case. I would suggest that Vodafone were in addition much more honest about their coverage.

guess I’ll have to decide if I want to bin my oomf sim and take out a new contract with EE or Vodafone.

Hi @Blackberryipod,

Thank you for taking a look and providing us with an update.

Though the route may show a strong connection throughout, the fact that the train is almost constantly moving and therefore going in and out of different mast ranges in quick succession means it can impact the quality of your mobile connection during your travel.

Do you have any issues with your connection and service when not on the train?


Zach - Forum Team
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Hi thanks for your response. When I’m not on the train I’m either at home or at work using Wi-Fi. What I’m saying is that before the switch it worked pretty well, I was able to join a call on Microsoft Teams for pretty much the whole journey. Now it is very patchy and I’m disconnected for more time than I’m connected. Are you saying the O2 network isn’t to be used on trains?  Looks like I’ll have to switch networks myself then. 

Hi @Blackberryipod,

It's a shame to hear that. I'm saying that for the reasons I outlined above it would be expected with any mobile provide why your signal may not be quite as strong as the reception within the areas your train travels through.

Do you have any other issues with the mobile service in any other location away from Wi-Fi?


Zach - Forum Team
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Thank you Zak. Fortunately I’m able to have MS teams calls between my sons school and home, TBH it doesn’t seem any worse than it was with Vodafone. I don’t believe there is an underlying problem with my handset or another technical issue. Just very poor data throughput which disconnects my calls when I’m on the train. 

My work life balance is all about trying to juggle sorting out my young children (school nursery etc) and attempting to do my job. It didn’t matter that I was late for work as I used to be present on the MS teams calls, since the switch to O2 I’m not.

My main question is to ask is will VM/O2 continue to invest in their mobile network or am I better off finding a provider with a more reliable network?

Was a lot better on my journey home from work today. Not as good as Vodafone but not too bad. 

Still, even inside the north circular it can be patchy. Wouldn’t want to rely on it in a rural area!

Hi @Blackberryipod,

Thank you for coming back to us about your ongoing connection issue. We would hate to lose you as a customer due to the connection you're experiencing while on the train.

As my colleague explained, as the train moved in and out of  different mast ranges, this can cause temporary instability when using your Mobile Data on the train.

Glad to hear that your connection recently has been better than before. How are you getting on with this?

Keep us updated.

Thank you.

Forum Team

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