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Utility Warehouse and Zen Named Which? Recommended Broadband ISPs

Thursday, September 18th, 2014 (9:28 am) - Score 6,570

Consumer magazine Which? has today published the results of their latest biannual reader survey of broadband ISP satisfaction, which ended up handing their top ‘Recommended Provider’ status to Utility Warehouse, Zen Internet and John Lewis. By comparison most of the markets largest providers were pushed to the bottom.

The consumer survey, which was conducted with around 2,000 readers during July 2014, quizzed respondents about service aspects including connection speed, support, connection reliability, value for money and customer service in order to produce a general customer score of satisfaction.

The results revealed that Utility Warehouse came top with 85%, followed by Zen Internet on 80% and John Lewis on 78%. However PlusNet and Tesco deserve a special mention for scoring 74% and 73% respectively, which put them just outside of Which?’s recommended provider status.

Which? Broadband Awards – H2 2014
1. Utility Warehouse (85%)
2. Zen Internet (80%)
3. John Lewis Broadband (78%)
4. PlusNet (74%)
5. Tesco Broadband (73%)
6. Eclipse Internet (67%)
7. Post Office (60%)
8. Virgin Media (53%)
10. Sky Broadband (50%)
11. TalkTalk (50%)
12. EE (49%)
13. BT (49%)

Curiously Which?’s article claims that Eclipse Internet “no longer sells domestic broadband packages” (though apparently they did at the time of this survey), but a quick check of Eclipse’s website clearly still lists a variety of home broadband options and bundles as still being available to order.

As for the ISPs at the bottom, BT’s lowest aspect of service was in the ‘Value for Money’ area where they only scored 2 stars out of 5. Clearly not everybody finds value in the free BTSport TV content that they’ve been busy bundling alongside broadband for the past year. Oddly, despite being at the bottom, EE and TalkTalk actually had more 2 star ratings.

In fact EE got 2 stars for Speed, Reliability and Technical Support, which was mirrored by TalkTalk’s result. But TalkTalk managed to avoid being second to last by virtue of securing 4 stars out of 5 in the ‘Value for Money’ rating. Otherwise it was also surprising to see Virgin Media and Sky Broadband doing so poorly as they tend to fair better than that in other studies.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
4 Responses
  1. Ignitionnet says:

    I’m sure it’s purely a coincidence that UW use multi-level marketing and a number of their users will also be selling the product and collecting commission.

  2. Rich says:

    Agreed. When your saleforce is a good few thousand self employed sellers then they are going to alter the results. I still can’t believe Which? haven’t caught onto this. UW use the TalkTalk (business?) network which in it’s self isn’t a bad thing but I don’t see how the results can be ‘that’ much different. It’ll be similar backend systems, lead times, and fault repairs…

    1. Andrew Tasker says:

      As a UW customer that has checked with Which? I can tell you that if you read their review then there is an area where they take into consideration the amount of UW Customers that are also on commission from the company, this reduced their score by 3%, which in this case would still be the highest with 82%. Which? reviews are only useful if you really read into them and not simply their headline.

  3. WebDude says:

    Which? surveys are probably still rather skewed by the survey not being taken in the way a regular poll would be (unless they have updated their policy and methods – last time I was a member, the poll of membership meant that some ISPs had a handful of users and others {perhaps smaller, niche ISPs) were represented by larger numbers, ie not in proportion to UK market share, so far easier to “tip the balance” simply on numbers. Unsure whether CA ever acknowledges their polling methods might have flaws.

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