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Broadband faults are more annoying than car breakdowns, according to study

  • Losing your broadband connection has been voted more annoying than your car breaking down, receiving bad customer service, your hot water boiler failing, waiting in for a delivery that doesn't show, and transport delays
  • On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being most annoying, broadband faults scored an average of 9 out of 10, compared to only 8 out of 10 for a car breakdown
  • Half of all 2,500 people surveyed rated the annoyance factor of faulty broadband 10 out of 10

19 May 2015: People find losing their broadband connection for any period of time more annoying than their car breaking down, according to a survey of 2,500 UK residents by broadband, TV and mobile comparison site Cable.co.uk.

Users also voted it more annoying than receiving bad customer service, their boiler failing, waiting in for a delivery that doesn't turn up and transport delays.

Broadband drop-outs were given an average score of 9 out of 10, with 10 being extremely annoying. Half of users rated it 10 out of 10.

Commenting on the results, Cable.co.uk's consumer telecoms expert Dan Howdle said:

“Go back ten years and very little of our work lives, social lives and downtime depended on a stable broadband connection. These days, for many of us, the variety of uses – some vital, others recreational or social – for a home broadband connection is extraordinary. Many of us have become dependent.

“When we lose our internet connection, we lose much of our ability to engage within our social sphere. We are cast outside of it without even the ability to look in.

“Entertainment, both passive and interactive, relies on us having purchased a broadband deal that’s stable and reliable. And, for many of us, gone are the days when we would return home from work or school to sit down and simply ‘see what’s on’.

“Instead, with a Smart TV, set-top box or games console, we can pick and choose to watch what we want, when we want.

“We bank online, buy and sell online, plan our activities, browse, research, interact and navigate, and a stable broadband connection, for many, constitutes the bridge between our home and our office; our link between the casual, social and professional elements of our lives."

“When our car breaks down, there’s a phone call and a wait – probably less than an hour – and a small financial penalty to fix the problem. We have power over it in that we get to decide when, how and to what extent our problem is solved.

Results

On a scale of 1-10, where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is extremely annoying, how annoying do you find it when your broadband connection drops out?

On a scale of 1-10, where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is extremely annoying, how annoying would you find it if YOUR CAR BROKE DOWN?

On a scale of 1-10, where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is extremely annoying, how annoying would you find it if your HOT WATER BOILER FAILED?

On a scale of 1-10, where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is extremely annoying, how annoying would you find it if you WAITED IN FOR A DELIVERY THAT DIDN'T ARRIVE?

On a scale of 1-10, where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is extremely annoying, how annoying would you find BAD AND/OR RUDE CUSTOMER SERVICE?

On a scale of 1-10, where 1 is not annoying at all and 10 is extremely annoying, how annoying would you find TRANSPORT DELAYS (FLIGHTS/TRAINS/BUSES)?

Notes to editors

  • If using our research and/or commentary we would deeply appreciate a link either to this page or to https://www.cable.co.uk

-ends-

What is Cable.co.uk?

Cable.co.uk is a broadband, TV and phone comparator, unique news source and consumer champion.

Dan Howdle has been plugged into the attitudes of UK broadband, TV and mobile customers for over two decades. Having spent 12 years at the coalface of consumer telecoms research, initiating and running projects both nationally and internationally on behalf of the biggest players in the industry. Dan is now Director of Communications and in-house consumer telecoms expert for Cable.co.uk.

An experienced broadcaster, commentator and writer who frequently appears on BBC TV and radio, ITV, Sky and in the national papers and their websites, Dan leads a team of journalists and communications folk who spend their days researching and reporting on problems faced by UK broadband, TV and mobile customers both on an individual and macro level.

Dan campaigns on many issues currently facing consumers of broadband, TV and mobile products in the UK. These include, but are not limited to: Rural broadband provision; mobile coverage; broadband, TV and mobile customer contract issues; broadband and mobile broadband speeds; switching and money-saving; infrastructural challenges; pricing, changes and structures; shifts in technology and the marketplace; telecoms regulation, policy and law; fines, adjudications and policy changes; mergers and closures of UK providers; annual financials and more.

Dan has advised Ofcom on issues surrounding service quality. He also administers and adjudicates the yearly Broadband Service Quality Awards and sits on the panel of judges for the Internet Service Providers Association annual awards.

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