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EE still UK's most complained-about broadband and landline provider

Tuesday, September 22nd 2015 by Phil Wilkinson-Jones

EE is still the UK’s most complained-about broadband and home phone provider, new Ofcom figures have revealed.

Ofcom’s consumer complaints data also showed that Vodafone was the most complained-about mobile operator, while TalkTalk generated the most complaints about pay TV provider.

The total volume of telecoms and pay TV complaints made to Ofcom continued to decrease in the second quarter of 2015, even as the number of consumers taking up the services increased.

Broadband, mobile pay-as-you-go and mobile pay monthly services saw the most notable reductions in total volume of complaints.

Total complaints volumes for fixed line telephone and pay TV services remained at similar levels to the first three months of the year.

EE generated the most complaints for broadband and landline as a proportion of its customer base (0.45 per 1,000 customers), although the volume of complaints did decrease.

Problems relating to faults, service and provision accounted for 40% of EE broadband complaints. 20% of complaints were about billing, pricing and charges, while a further 20% related to complaints handling.

EE last week launched a ‘Broadband Service First’ programme to improve its customer service, prompted by a high volume of complaints.

The programme includes the creation of a new Broadband Operations Hub and up to 500 permanent broadband customer service roles.

TalkTalk’s broadband complaints volume (0.27) was above the industry average of 0.16, as was BT’s (0.22) and Plusnet’s (0.20).

Virgin Media complaints (0.07) were below the industry average and Sky had the lowest complaints volume for broadband at 0.05.

'Room for improvement'

EE’s landline services generated 0.34 complaints per 1,000 customers, with the main gripes being problems changing provider (32%), concerns about faults, service and provision (29%) and complaints handling (17%).

Post Office HomePhone, Plusnet and TalkTalk also had landline complaint volumes above the industry average of 0.13.

BT was broadly in line with the industry average. Sky (0.06) and Virgin were the only providers with complaints volumes below the industry average.

Vodafone was the most complained-about mobile provider, generated 0.14 complaints per 1,000 customers.

Billing, pricing and charges accounted for 34% of complaints. 27% of complaints were about complaints handling and 17% regarded faults, service and provision.

Talk Mobile complaints increased to 0.12, while Virgin Mobile (0.08) and EE also generated more than the industry average.

Tesco Mobile generated the lowest number of complaints (0.01) for the fifth consecutive quarter.

The most complained-about TV provider was TalkTalk (0.14) with fault, service and provision issues accounting for 36% of complaints.

BT saw a reduction in complaint volumes from 0.15 in the first quarter to 0.11 in the second. Virgin Media complaints increased from 0.04 to 0.05 over the same period.

Sky (0.01) was the only provider to generate fewer complaints than the industry average.

Claudio Pollack, director of Ofcom’s content and consumer group, said: “Our complaints data allow consumers to make meaningful comparisons that can be useful when looking for a new provider.

“While it’s encouraging to see a continued decrease in the total number of complaints, there is still room for improvement. We expect providers to make customer service and complaints handling top priorities.”

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