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Commuters Flock To Orange Mobile Website After London Tube Strike

Last week's tube strike which affected the whole London Underground for 48 hours caused a significant spike in the amount of visitors going to Orange's mobile website.

According to an article published by NMA, the France-Telecom owned mobile phone operator saw an increase of 450 percent in the number of visitors visiting the travel section on its mobile portal. Orange users were also able to download the Tube map for free thanks to a partnership between Orange and MXData.

The number of Orange users subscribing to the site's live Tube update increased by more than twice. Meanwhile the number of people requesting real-time bus information - a little known feature - experienced an 86 percent growth.

Other mobile companies like O2 and Vodafone have yet to disclose their traffic figures for the 8th and 9th of June but these are likely to reflect Orange's significant rise in the number of visitors.

Internet analyst firm Alexa also reported that TFL's online website surged significantly from 2600 to 733 over the 45 hours period as concerned commuters flocked to the website for information.

The strike which caused significant inconvenience for several millions of travellers all over London is said to have cost the local economy up to £100 million over the two days. Significantly, the RMT union has already said that further strike actions can be expected.

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Steve Ricketts, head of third-party services at Orange, told NMA that “The mobile phone allows people to access the internet while they’re on the move, making it a convenient and simple way of getting the latest travel information.”

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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.