Millions of broadband customers who do not get the connection speeds that they pay for should receive compensation, according to a number of MPs.
A new report calls on Ofcom, the UK’s telecoms regulator, to get tough on broadband providers that promise fast speeds but fail to deliver.
The British infrastructure group of MPs, led by Grant Shapps, estimates that as many as 6.7m UK broadband connections may not hit the 10Mb minimum that the government wants to be the UK standard for a basic decent service.
The Broadband 2.0 report, which is back by 57 MPs, calls for automatic compensation for customers who do not get the level of speed that they were promised on the internet packages that they buy.
Mr Shapps said: Although broadband is increasingly considered to be an essential utility, the quality of customer services has simply not caught up with demand,”
He continued: “It is unacceptable that there are still no minimum standards in the UK telecoms sector to protect customers from protracted complaints procedures, and ensure that broadband providers are fully accountable to their customers.”
Currently, Ofcom administers a voluntary code of practice on broadband connections, which the UK’s leading internet service providers such as Virgin Media, BT and Sky have all signed up to. The code of practice allows customers to walk away from a contract without penalties if the speed consistently falls below a minimum level set by their provider.
Ofcom released a statement saying that the code was being reviewed, with the potential to make it tougher, but there was currently no penalty compensation related to speed failures for customers.
360group – VoIP Cambridgeshire
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