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TalkTalk Survey Warns Slow Broadband “Load Rage” Driving Brits Barmy

Saturday, July 1st, 2017 (7:36 am) - Score 3,866

A new survey of 2,000 British adults by Mortar, which was commissioned by UK ISP TalkTalk, has revealed that slow broadband comes top in a list of household bugbears for 2017 and as a result this is causing people to lose their cool as often as 138 times a year (aka “Load Rage“).

The study found that UK homes can have as many as 14 WiFi enabled devices connected at any given time and 35% of respondents also spend at least 4 hours online at home per day. However 33% said they struggled to stream online video (films and TV) and 34% faced problems with completing their online shop.

Top 10 British Household Bugbears in 2017:
Slow broadband (45%)
Noisy neighbours (35%)
Finding the bin is full and no one else has bothered to empty it (30%)
Family members leaving washing up to be done (24%)
Losing the remote control (23%)
Hair in the shower/ sink plughole (22%)
The toilet seat left up (19)
Running over your data allowance because you’ve had to use your data instead of Wi-Fi at home (17%)
Finding someone else has used the last of the milk (13%)
Queueing for the bathroom (11%)

The Top 10 Causes of Load Rage:
Wi-Fi enabled calls cutting out at home due to slow broadband (20%)
Missing crucial parts/ endings of TV shows/ films (19%)
Video game interrupted (17%)
Missing key moment/s in other sporting match/event (14%)
Missing last remaining size/ item/ tickets before getting through checkout while internet shopping (13%)
Losing work/documents (13%)
Missing a goal in a football game (11%)
Falling out with family/ friends (7%)
Missing a key message from a loved one (6%)
Missing a work deadline (5%)

Apparently so-called “Load Rage“, or simply plain old ‘anger’ for those of us who aren’t PR marketing execs, is now so common that 21% would even be willing to give up either chocolate or alcohol if it meant they’d be guaranteed faster internet. However the survey didn’t ask respondents how much ‘faster’ is fast enough for them to be happy.

Laurent Kretzchmar, Head of Product at TalkTalk, said:

“With everything from our mobile devices and game consoles, to our TVs and even the heating thermostat all connecting to one router, the reality is that the connectivity needs of many households across the UK have surpassed traditional broadband. Just as many homes used to have to wait to make a call because someone else was using the internet, now we see households taking it in turns to do everything they want to do online.

We’ve recently seen a surge in new customers choosing fibre, because it’s important for households to be able to stream, download and upload all at the same time. While it won’t solve all our household bugbears, we know how important a speedy internet connection is to daily life.”

Naturally TalkTalk claims all of this indicates that “most busy households have outgrown a standard broadband connection” and as a result they’re keen to sell you on upgrading to their ‘up to’ 38-76Mbps capable “fibre” (FTTC) packages instead, which might indeed improve your online experience.

On the other hand it’s worth remembering that many of the problems described above may not always be caused by your ISP or broadband connection (e.g. it could be a computer / device fault, issues such as slow home WiFi or problems caused by remote websites and servers) and they won’t always be improved by simply connecting to the Internet at a faster speed.

Similarly TalkTalk is certainly not immune to complaints about slow broadband speeds and so-called “Load Rage“, which even happens on their FTTCfibre” packages that don’t always deliver the promised “superfast” speeds. However experiences do vary and the majority of people should still see a benefit from upgrading.

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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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12 Responses
  1. Avatar TheFacts says:

    How convenient for TalkTalk that broadband issues are top of both lists. Where did the 138 number come from?

  2. Avatar dragoneast says:

    What about a survey about the relative rage when we don’t get access to the cr8p the internet delivers against the rage at the rubbish the internet delivers when we do? That might be about 0.01/99.99 in my case. At yep, it’s all my fault. Patience sorts everything out.

  3. Avatar CarlT says:

    Using a TalkTalk Business based service and feeling this rage for sure.

    They really can’t talk about broadband performance. They should stick to talking purely about price.

    1. Avatar Tim says:

      Well TalkTalk won’t even provide a telephone line let alone broadband in my Market 1 20CN exchange area. So much for their “TalkTalk For Everyone” slogan.

    2. Avatar RuralBroadbandSucks says:

      @Tim: same here (market A), I did have talk talk at this address before, but when I tried last year they said it wasn’t available at this location.
      All the telecoms companies put the customers down at the bottom of the list of priorities, with profit & investors at the top of the list. Their decision making is supported by ofcom and the UK government who don’t seem to have sufficient technical skiils and forward thinking to put a plan together that is universal, cost effective, time bound and does not discriminate.

    3. Avatar CarlT says:

      Not really sure we can demand individual operators provide service at specific addresses. It’s not the UK government’s job to tell individual ISPs that do not provide their own infrastructure to homes where they must serve. Requiring TalkTalk to buy products from BT that they don’t actually want to might be a bit much.

  4. Avatar Trevor Lowe says:

    Big busines fatcats strove to become milionairs, now their aim is to become billionaires!

  5. Avatar Ian Robertson says:

    Just se the irony in it being Talktalk that sanctioned this survey. Shoot and foot spring to mind. And fibre only goes to the exchange as our Brightsparks engineer pointed out (yes that’s really what Talktalk call them) it’s still copper wire into your house.

    1. Avatar joe pineapples says:

      “it’s still copper wire into your house.”

      if you’re lucky.

  6. Avatar RICHARD WALTON says:

    Can someone please advise me what speed you really need to stream TV across 2 or more devices.

    I feel 50mbs and more is wasted as most households don’t really need it.

    1. Avatar ultraspeedy says:

      “Can someone please advise me what speed you really need to stream TV across 2 or more devices.

      I feel 50mbs and more is wasted as most households don’t really need it.”

      What speed you need will depend on the “TV” service you are referring to and the bitrate of the original stream.

      Upload speed will also be a factor if you are taking content you have at home and streaming it remotely (example video stored on a NAS which you want to watch while away from home will require your home connection to have enough upload to stream the file remotely). A Bluray rip streamed remotely WITHOUT compression wont be possible with the “superfast” 20Mbps upload most have.

      50Mb certainly is not “wasted” download speed either. A single Ultra HD film on Netflix is around 25Mbps and a single 4K clip on youtube can be as much as 35Mbps… Or in short just for those 2 things the requirements for guaranteed NO buffering or loading delay is more than 50Mb. I would also think quite a few households nowadays sit down and watch a film while little billy is watching his fave youtuber.

      All this has been discussed on here before.

  7. Avatar Richard says:

    Thank you for your reply.

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