Power cuts: calls, wifi… What impact for smartphones?


What winter are the French going to spend? Autumn is not over and its warmer than normal temperatures have yet to give the French a taste of winter. If we expect a fall in the thermometer in the coming weeks, Météo France is not counting on a particularly cold winter, which is rather good news. Indeed, temperatures that are too low could create tensions on the French electricity network and therefore lead to occasional and localized cuts, also called rotating load shedding.

For the time being, the French are rather good students, since electricity consumption in France fell during the month of October. According to the latest figures from RTE, published this week on its website, we consumed 6.8% less electricity compared to the average for previous years, between 2014 and 2019. The company specifies that “the drop in consumption electricity is mainly driven by industry, in a context of rising electricity prices” and therefore welcomes the efforts made by industrialists and by the French… Thanks to the weather.

Indeed, RTE recalls that “the temperatures in October were well above the usual temperatures for the season, in particular over the last fortnight (…) The mild temperatures at the start of autumn are reducing in particular electricity needs for heating in the tertiary and residential sectors”.

For the time being, therefore, there is no question of setting up rotating load shedding. RTE communicated several times on this subject, explaining that it was the last option considered and that it would only be used in case of extreme necessity. If this is a scenario for the moment, many French people are wondering and among them managers of structures whose functioning is essential: hospitals, public transport but also mobile telephone networks. As Le Figaro explains, Orange is now preparing for possible power cuts this winter, but everything is far from settled. Would our cell phones continue to work without electricity? Could we call, send messages? See the answers to your questions below.