Feb 23, 2024 - Business

AT&T's big network fail was a remote work triumph

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The big AT&T network outage was a productivity catastrophe for commuters across the country Thursday, but remote workers were totes fine, Bloomberg reported.

State of play: Without cellular access on their train rides, commuters apparently resorted to reading books  the paper kind! — instead of making calls, checking email, frantically Slacking, etc.

  • Travel to and from meetings was also disrupted — without Google or Apple Maps guiding the way, people got a bit lost.
  • "Missed meetings, frustrated clients, staffers left in the dark — the outage sent American workers into a tailspin."
  • Back at home, remote workers with WiFi continued to blissfully distract themselves (I mean, be productive).

The big picture: The outage was less of an issue once folks were at the office, but underlined how commutes generally drain worker productivity — even when phones are working.

The bottom line: The disruption was also a nice reminder of why work-from-home grew popular in the first place.

  • Show this to your CEO next time they order folks back to the office.
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