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Nationwide AT&T cellular outage leaves over 70,000 without service

Early Thursday morning, many AT&T users across the country woke up to find that their phones were in SOS mode. Unable to make calls or texts, customers flocked online to share their experiences and look for support. Starting around 3 a.m. ET, customers began reporting that they had no service. By 8 a.m., data from Downdetector showed that there were around 73,552 reported incidents. AT&T is the largest cellular service provider in the country with more than 240 million subscribers. The nationwide outage seems to be particularly prominent in major cities such as Los Angeles, New York City, Dallas, Indianapolis, Chicago, Houston, San Antonio, Louisville, Atlanta, and Miami.

“Some of our customers are experiencing wireless service interruptions this morning,” AT&T shared in a statement to CNBC, “Our network teams took immediate action and so far, three-quarters of our network has been restored. We are working as quickly as possible to restore service to remaining customers.” AT&T has not yet released the cause of the massive outages.

A few thousand reports were made around 10 a.m. by T-Mobile and Verizon customers, but both companies believe that their networks are unaffected. “Downdetector is likely reflecting challenges our customers were having attempting to connect to users on other networks,” Verizon told CNBC via email. T-Mobile told NPR that its network is “operating normally.” Cricket Wireless had more than 13,000 reports, while Boost Mobile only had around 700.

SOS mode allows for immediate calls to emergency services, but the San Francisco Fire Department posted “We are aware of an issue impacting AT&T wireless customers from making and receiving any phone calls (including to 911),” on X, formerly known as Twitter. They are actively monitoring the issue, and report that their call center is still functional.

Emergency services across the country ask that those impacted by the outage not call or text 911 just to see if they can. Repeated flooding of calls and texts will prevent them from quickly responding to urgent emergencies. “Please do not do this,” Massachusetts State Police said in a post on X, “If you can successfully place a non-emergency call to another number via your cell service then your 911 service will also work.”

As of 1:00 p.m., Downdetector shows around 13,000 AT&T customers are still affected by the outage. It is uncertain when service will be fully restored.

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