TalkTalk Tops Ofcom List Of Worst Broadband Providers


According to the UK regulator’s data, TalkTalk and Orange are once again the nastiest companies to deal with

TalkTalk is once again top of Ofcom’s list of the worst providers of landline and broadband services, based on the number of complaints.

According to statistics, TalkTalk is the worst landline and fixed broadband provider, while Orange is at the bottom of the pile when mobile services are concerned, closely followed by 3UK, in the regulartor’s latest report on telecoms complaints, published today.

The report aggregates the data about complaints made between October and December 2011, in hopes that the public spanking will force the companies to improve their performance. The information could also be useful to consumers who consider switching service providers.

Bad to the bone

Ofcom data shows that in the landline service sector, TalkTalk Group had more problems than any other company, with impressive 0.78 complaints per 1,000 customers. These have been mostly driven by issues relating to billing and customer service. For comparison, second worst – Sky – only had 0.24 complaints per 1,000 customers.

TalkTalk has been consistently receiving more complaints than any other landline provider for the whole of last year. The company is losing business fast, with an estimated 50,000 customers leaving TalkTalk in three months leading up to December.

The least complained about landline provider over the same period was Virgin Media, with 0.18 complaints per 1,000 customers. Virgin Media has been the least problematic landline provider for the last five quarters.

In the fixed broadband service department, Ofcom’s data once again shows TalkTalk Group generating the most complaints in proportion to its customer base, with 0.61 complaints per 1,000 customers. These were largely driven by line faults and other service issues. The least complained about broadband providers over the same period were Sky and Virgin.

As for the mobile service providers, the data shows that in the last quarter of 2011 Ofcom received the most complaints about Orange – 0.17 per 1,000 customers. The sudden surge in complaints against the company was driven by its announcement of an increase to the monthly plan prices for all customers, including those who were already tied into existing contracts. Orange didn’t do much better in the previous report, published in November.

The second worst network for mobile phones was 3UK, with 0.15 complaints per 1,000 customers. These figures continue to be driven by complaints about disputed charges and customer services.

As in all previous quarters, the least complained about mobile provider over this period was O2, with just 0.02 (note the symmetry) complaints per 1,000 customers.

On average, Ofcom receives over 300 telecoms complaints a day. Such complaints are likely to be made where a consumer has been unable to resolve an issue with their provider to their satisfaction. As one of the few regulators that collect their own complaints data, Ofcom claims it is the only regulator to publish reports of this nature.

The full report is available here.

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