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Which? H1 2017 UK Mobile Network Survey Ranks EE and Vodafone Bottom

Tuesday, May 30th, 2017 (7:47 am) - Score 2,493

Consumer magazine Which? has published the outcome from their first 2017 consumer survey of Mobile Network Operators (MNO), which ranked Giffgaff top with a customer score of 81%. Sadly Vodafone and EE could both be found languishing at the bottom of the table on 50% (tied).

The survey, which was based on responses gathered from 4,026 “members of the public” during February 2017, allowed people to rank each operator by categories including customer service, ease of contacting, value for money and incentives (n/a is shown when not enough responses were received to produce a rating).

Interestingly nearly all of the top half of the table are Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNO) that piggyback off the four primary MNOs via their own unique selection of tariffs, except Three UK (ranked 7th) that managed to be ranked highest among all of the four primary operators. Sadly O2, EE and Vodafone were all stuck floundering in the bottom half.

Alex Neill, Which? Managing Director of Home Products and Services, said:

“Year after year we see the smaller providers giving great service and some of the biggest providers struggling to meet their customers expectations. Those who are fed up of receiving a poor service from their provider should look to switch.

It is critical that the next government and Ofcom listen to the concerns of mobile phone customers so that there is increased competition in the industry which will lead to a better experience for customers.”

Curiously the Utility Warehouse also makes it into second place with a customer score of 76%, which is despite failing to receive a rating for any of the key categories. This is perhaps because Which?’s overall score (used to rank the table) is only a combination of satisfaction and likelihood of recommending it to a friend, which sadly doesn’t factor in the individual star ratings.
which? uk mobile network survey h1 2017

Mobile operator EE might frequently and justifiably claim to have the best 4G mobile network coverage and speeds in the United Kingdom, although when it comes to the customer experience they appear to be lacking. Sadly Which? didn’t ask those who took part in their survey to rate the speed and coverage of their mobile provider.

We should point out that Ofcom’s Q4 2016 consumer complaints report showed that EE received well below the industry average for consumer complaints, while Vodafone suffered more complaints than any other operator (here).

Separately the survey also revealed that only 26% of mobile customers had switched provider in the last two years, although Ofcom has recently proposed to make switching a lot easier (here).

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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.
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6 Responses
  1. Avatar captain.cretin says:

    GiffGaff’s score would be even higher if they werent stuck sucking 02’s hind tit.

    I have used GG for years and the service is good, but the 02 traffic management on some transmitters is so bad I get dial-up speeds in some areas, even with 100% signal strength.

  2. Avatar JustAnotherFileServer says:

    Whoever did this survey (hint, hint, Which?) needs to back to school and learn how to do surveys.

    You can’t compare a product/service from one supplier with only 30 people to another with 550 people using that method

    1. Avatar captain.cretin says:

      “Which” need to learn a lot of things; like thinking about their customers when drawing up Direct Debit mandates.

      Its been a few years, but the one I had sent to me when I was thinking about becoming a subscriber included the following –

      “variable sums to be taken at varying times without further notice”.

      So they could empty your bank account without warning.

      Needless to say, I didnt sign up.

  3. Avatar arundel says:

    Another daft survey from which. Their methodology is suspect at best.

  4. Avatar dragoneast says:

    I prefer to use my own experience, or that of someone I know; or even an expert in the subject. I’ve never bought or done anything on a recommendation from Which? even when I was a subscriber (for a reason I never quite fathomed, but perhaps I was just an optimist that they might get it right, someday). I always found something that better suited my needs. They seem to be a sort of pollster (though using a self-selecting sample), and also about as accurate, as some sort of crystal ball.

  5. Avatar D cowden says:

    Appalling current Vodafone survey. Asked to take part then my answers were not counted because the survey expired because my service as non existent at home. Vodafone are terrible . About to renew but not with them.

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