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EE, BT and TalkTalk Collected the Most Consumer Complaints in Q1 2016

Friday, July 8th, 2016 (11:04 am) - Score 1,831

UK ISPs EE, BT and TalkTalk have managed to collect the greatest proportion of consumer complaints for their fixed line broadband services, at least that’s one way of reading Ofcom’s Q1 2016 consumer complaints report. Meanwhile Virgin Media and Sky Broadband attracted the fewest gripes.

The national UK telecoms regulator claims to record around 300 complaints per day, but their report only focuses upon the market’s largest providers (i.e. those with an overall market share of at least 1.5%) and that’s because the smallest players don’t produce enough data.

The data also reflects complaints that have been made directly to Ofcom rather than the ISP (e.g. users that have not been able to resolve their complaint via the ISP), which means that it doesn’t necessarily provide a perfect overview of all the moans being made across the whole market.

Otherwise the results themselves are reflected as a proportion of residential subscribers (i.e. the total number of quarterly complaints per 100,000 customers), which makes it easier to compare providers in a market where the big operators can vary significantly in size.

The Results for Q1 2016

Overall the total volume of complaints appears to have held fairly steady this quarter, although fixed line broadband and phone services continued to attract the most gripes. On the broadband side there has been a small improvement since the end of 2015, but sadly EE continues to be the most complained about provider, with BT and TalkTalk following closely behind.

Apparently EE’s main complaint drivers were related to faults, service and provision issues; complaints handling; and issues with billing, pricing and charges. So just a few areas that need work then *cough*. Elsewhere Plusnet saw fewer complaints than in Q4 2015, but they’re still receiving too many for comfort.

fixed_line_broadband_complaints_q1_2016

The situation for fixed line phone services is a bit more varied and this time around EE and Plusnet have both improved, while TalkTalk and the Post Office both attracted the most gripes. TalkTalk’s main complaint drivers related to issues around faults, service, and provision; issues relating to billing, pricing and charges; and general complaints handling.

fixed_line_phone_complaints_q1_2016

The results for Mobile (pay monthly) and Pay TV providers can be found below, which in the first instance spells a continuation of the bad news for Vodafone (Ofcom are currently probing some of their practices). Most of Vodafone’s issues related to problems with billing, pricing and charges; complaints handling; and fault, service or provision issues in that order.

mobile_complaints_q1_2016

On the Pay TV front it’s frustrating to find that BT TV has seen more complaints than in the previous quarter, with issues around fault, service, or provision; as well as billing, pricing and charges; and complaints handling all taking centre stage. TalkTalk also generated relative complaint volumes above the industry average, but they have at least improved quite a bit.

pay_tv_complaints_q1_2016

Ofcom’s Complaints Report Q1 2016
http://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/market-data-research/../complaints/Q1-2016/

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Mark Jackson
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
6 Responses
  1. Avatar karl says:

    Nice write up Mark 🙂

    1. Avatar FibreFred says:

      I see shares in Andrex tissues closed +20% today good on you for doing your bit to stimulate the economy

    2. Avatar karl says:

      You mean the American Economy i presume seeing as they are owned by Kimberly-Clark. Good attempt at wit though makes a change.

  2. Avatar Captain Cretin says:

    In other news, bears mostly poop in the woods and Pope usually a Catholic.

  3. Avatar Wise Old Owl says:

    Which ISP does the Pope use? Is he in the cloud yet? Does he get a discount if yes?
    All of these questions disturb my sleep.

  4. Avatar GNewton says:

    Thank you Mark for this latest update on consumer complaints statistics which again confirms that that nothing much has changed, with BT still being among the worst for fixed line broadband, and Vodafone for mobile service. This matches up with e.g. what users posted on Truspilot over the past few months:

    https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/www.vodafone.co.uk
    https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/bt.com

    I know there will be some forum posters here on ISPReview who hate the truth.

    And having said that, BT finally appears to be moving into the right direction, looking at your chart, but still has a long way to go.

    Also, it is obvious that a more robust underlying technology (e.g. cable or fibre as opposed to DSL-copper) can help to reduce the number of customer complaints.

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