Broadband customers to benefit from broadband speed transparency

O2 welcomes Ofcom’s study into broadband performance which shows the average speeds experienced by broadband customers across the UK.

The results follow the recently-introduced industry code of practice through which ISPs are required to give customers a true picture of likely broadband speeds at the point of sale. The voluntary code is designed to provide greater clarity for consumers and reduce the potential for consumers to be misled over the speeds they will be able to achieve from their broadband service.

Ofcom’s study showed that UK consumers receive an average broadband speed of 3.6 megabits per second. That is less than the average maximum possible speed of 4.3 MBps across the UK and significantly below advertised headline speeds. Speeds are slowest between 5pm and 6pm on Sundays, when use of the internet is at its highest. But most consumers say they’re reasonably happy with their broadband service, although speed is the most commonly cited cause of dissatisfaction.

Mike Fairman, head of O2 broadband, said: “We welcome this study and the introduction of the industry code of practice. Connection speed is one of the biggest frustrations for broadband users so a commitment from the industry to be transparent on speeds is good news.

“Customers should know what broadband speed they will get, which is one of the reasons we perform speed checks for our customers,” added Fairman. “If Ofcom considers publishing ISP specific speeds, we would want data for all UK broadband service providers, including O2 Home Broadband, to be made available.”
Research conducted by O2 in 2008 revealed that connection speeds remained at the forefront of pains for broadband users with nearly a quarter of people citing it as the most frustrating thing about their broadband service, though only half those questioned had any idea what speed their broadband was.

O2 will continue to ensure that customers get the right information about their broadband speeds and fully supports Ofcom’s Voluntary Code on Broadband Speeds and broadband speed research initiative. O2 conducts a line check before and after a customer buys broadband to ensure that customers are certain about the speed their phone line can support. O2 also provides upfront details on fair usage policies, traffic policies and download limits.

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