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Cable.co.uk comments on reported 35% increase in telecoms complaints

  • Consumers made 15,542 complaints about telecoms providers this year
  • Complaints are up 35% from three years ago
  • Majority of complaints relate to billing issues

21 October 2015: The Communications Ombudsman received 15,542 complaints about telecoms providers in 2015 so far, according to figures published this morning.

This represents a rise of 5% on the same period in 2014. Complaints have risen by almost a third (35%) in the last three years.

The majority of complaints (31%) related to billing issues, such as complicated invoices, direct debit amounts or incorrect account details.

The full Ombudsman Services press release is available here.

Dan Howdle, telecoms expert at consumer mobile and broadband advice site Cable.co.uk, had this to say about the figures:

“In the past couple of years the UK has seen major upheavals in both mobile and broadband infrastructure.

“BT Openreach and Virgin Media continue to roll out their fibre networks, while the UK’s four mobile network providers – EE, Vodafone, O2 and Three – vie for their piece of the 4G pie. It’s turbulent right now, and even a little chaotic.

“If the UK telecoms market were a sea it would be one whipped up by force-ten gales. Where there is turbulence and chaos, things go wrong more often.

“I’m aware that some are suggesting these results point toward a somehow more informed, righteous and/or bellicose consumer, but I really don’t believe that to be the case. There’s simply more that can – and therefore does – go wrong."

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

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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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