Better mobile phone and broadband service provision

I’ve long campaigned for improvements to the mobile phone signal and broadband capabilities in West Cornwall and on Scilly. I’ve also promoted tools to help establish how good or bad our service provision is. I welcome a brand new tool launched by Ofcom this week to make this task even easier.

Consumers can find out how well they are served by major telecoms companies thanks to a new interactive tool launched by Ofcom.

The online tool presents findings from Ofcom’s first ‘Comparing Service Quality’ report in a simple, visual format. The comprehensive report and accompanying checker allows phone and broadband customers to compare how different companies rate for answering customer calls, handling complaints, and reliability of their services.

The data draws on a combination of consumer research and complaints figures, as well as statistics obtained directly from telecoms companies that have never been published before. The report sets out consumers’ overall satisfaction with their providers, which remains high – overall, 92% of mobile customers, 89% of landline telephone customers and 87% of broadband customers were satisfied with their service. However, it also looks at levels of complaints by company and satisfaction with how complaints were handled – just over half those who complained to their mobile or broadband company were satisfied with complaint handling.

Ofcom wants this information to shine a light on how different companies perform, and they are challenging the industry to up its game on customer service. They are will be monitoring performance closely to ensure industry service standards are raised. Ofcom wants to help bring about a service revolution in the telecoms sector, where consistency and excellence become the norm, and customers always come first. Ofcom will report on telecoms quality of service annually and will use new powers in the Digital Economy Bill to gather more information to help consumers make better choices.

You can find the report and the online checker here: https://www.ofcom.org.uk/about-ofcom/latest/features-and-news/service-quality-telecoms-providers

Performance of home broadband

Ofcom has also published its annual report on UK Home Broadband Performance. This compares the performance of 19 popular broadband packages, from seven internet providers. The research finds that while average UK broadband download speeds have increased by 25% over the last year (up 7.3Mbit/s to 36.2 Mbit/s), the speeds offered by providers are not consistent throughout the day, and can fall significantly during busy periods due to people going online at the same time.