CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

Tech Industry

AT&T WorldNet stitching up switch glitch

A defective telephone switch that began "blinking on and off" causes Web access problems for about half of the company's subscribers.

A defective telephone switch in Virginia caused nearly two hours of Web access problems Friday morning for some AT&T WorldNet Service subscribers.

Company spokesman Dave Johnson said the switch, used to direct Internet traffic, began "blinking on and off" at 4 a.m. PDT. For the next 90 minutes, about half of all AT&T WorldNet subscribers couldn't read e-mail or use personalized Web pages, he said.

Some customers still couldn't access personalized Web pages nearly three hours after the faulty switch was taken offline and Internet traffic was rerouted to other parts of AT&T's network. "We're putting the finishing touches on that problem now," Johnson said.

The Web access provider launched an investigation to determine why the switch began, as Johnson puts it, "blinking on and off" between working and not working. He wouldn't speculate on a possible cause.

AT&T WorldNet uses digital subscriber lines (DSL), which along with cable modems are the most popular method to deliver broadband access to homes and offices.

The provider has a relatively small number of subscribers but is among the fastest DSL services in the country, providing downloads at nearly twice the industry average, according to a recent survey.