I have been an Orange mobile subscriber for over 10 years – since they launched and I’m generally very happy with the operation of the network but it’s clear that if they managed their mobile network with the same incompetence that they manage their online services – Partner would have gone bankrupt years agao.
Orange has a buggy online bill presentation application and their customer service sucks which makes me twice unhappy – once because it doesn’t work properly and twice because it’s impossible to get support.
Up until abut 6 months ago – you logged in, got a code via SMS text message, keyed in the code and then you got a pdf file with the monthly bill. Then they changed the PDF encoding so that you could only view it on Windows operating systems (I use Ubuntu but I keep an XP system for hard-core Windows suppliers like Orange and Bezeq).
The next improvement was changing the code transmission from a text message to an email. The emails would take anywhere from 60 seconds to 25 minutes to arrive – basically making the application unpredictable and unusable.
They seem to have solved the email latency issue but now you get an error message
חשבונית בפורמט PDF עדיין לא קיימת במערכת, אנא נסו במועד מאוחר יותר.
No problem – try anytime – even a month later and you still get the same stupid error message
Orange Israel online service sucks. Most Israeli online sites suck – placing an over emphasis on fancy graphics and flash rather than on usability and reliability. The worst offender is Bezeq – which places heavy flash advertising for it’s own services on its own web site. Leumi online is not bad but it still doesn’t work completely in Firefox.
My diagnosis is that since Israeli Web developers don’t speak English – they are incapable of learning from the best self-service Web sites like Continental Airlines because it’s too hard to understand the English.
The second reason is the Microsoft dominance of the application developer market in Israel – Web application programmers that work for commercial customers like Partner in Israel believe that ASP or ASP.net is the only environment you should use and Microsoft IE is the only browser you should support.
The Microsoft monoculture has created a tradition of buggy, mediocre applications – which is even worse than the sea of software security vulnerabilities created by the Microsoft monoculture programmers that don’t speak English and develop customer-facing applications in VB and ASP.NET