Ruslan Kogan is not taking the customer concerns about his Kogan Mobile business lightly. After putting much of the blame on Telstra wholesaler ISP ONE in recent weeks he’s gone a step further today by seeking an injunction against ISP ONE to prevent them refusing service to his customers.
Problems for Kogan Mobile customers range from refusal to recharge and requesting they “churn” to another provider right up to users with active paid up accounts suddenly losing all network access for no apparent reason.
The problem for Ruslan Kogan – a man who normally controls the product chain from factory to the customer door – is that he is almost completely hands-off when it comes to the operation of Kogan Mobile. Independent third party company ISP One is currently the sole wholesaler of the Telstra network, providing the “virtual” mobile network to both Kogan mobile and the recent entry ALDI mobile.
ISP One handles customer calls, emails and the connection and disconnection of accounts, and it seems from today’s legal action they are a bit more aggressive than Kogan would hope.
Today’s injunction seeks to uphold the existing commercial relationship Kogan Mobile have with ISP One which Kogan seems to hope will stop the disconnection and suspension of its mobile users.
EFTM understands that a wholesaler like ISP One is most likely buying access to the Telstra network on a per minute and per Kb of data rate. It seems the deal they did with Kogan (and therefore Aldi) was to assume that they could offer the retailer (Kogan in this case) an “unlimited plan” on the basis that the usage wouldn’t cost them more than they were selling it at. Perhaps they misunderstood the usage patterns of today’s price savvy mobile users?
Whatever the case, the Kogan brand is copping quite a hammering online over this issue and boss Ruslan Kogan won’t be keen for that to continue. Perhaps we will have to expect to see new prices and new plans from Kogan mobile after the dust settles on this current round of disconnections and refusals of service.
Trev is a Technology Commentator, Dad, Speaker and Rev Head.
He produces and hosts two popular podcasts, EFTM and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He also appears on over 50 radio stations across Australia weekly, and is the resident Tech Expert on Channel 9’s Today Show each day and appears regularly on A Current Affair.
Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave.