The British Infrastruture Group of MPs has published a report about broadband speeds around the country that criticises internet suppliers who over promise and under deliver. The report claims that 6.7 million people do not receive speeds above 10Mbps.
The Broadband 2.0 report is backed by 57 MPs and demands automatic compensation for customers who do not get the level of speed promised from the internet packages they buy.
The group’s chair Grant Shapps MP says: “Although broadband is increasingly considered to be an essential utility, the quality of customer services has simply not caught up with demand. 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.”
Ofcom, which regulates the internet companies, says: “We share concerns that broadband must improve and we’re already taking firm, wide-ranging action to protect customers. These include new plans for automatic compensation, faster repairs and installations, and ensuring providers commit to giving accurate speed information to customers.”
How fast and reliable is your broadband? There’s no doubt in the UK that we lag behind some other countries in the provision of high-speed internet. South Korea and Vietnam are two countries that have recently made notable investments in fibre optic technology to improve their broadband network.
Often in countryside locations it’s not possible to get decent broadband. And it’s not just internet. It’s not unusual to venture into more rural areas (that aren’t even that remote) and find that you can’t get a mobile signal at all either. Such a lack of coverage is not only annoying but also bad for business in such areas. Although companies such as BT say they are investing heavily, it’s still notable how patchy coverage can be for both internet and mobile.
But probably my biggest annoyance regarding broadband is that, down my way (this isn’t the case in London), I can’t get broadband without also paying for a landline that I seldom, if ever, utilise. Unshackling internet from a telephone landline, and its associated costs, would be a proper leap forward.
I’ve recently upgraded to Sky Fibre. I get 77mb down and 18mb up and it’s reliable and very fast. It probably helps that I am less than half a mile away from the exchange.
51mb down and 9mb up is fine, I don’t have an issue with speed. Was on around 15mb down before the upgrade, even that was fine despite being a pretty heavy user. Speeds have improved a lot for everyone I think, around 13 years ago my remote village didn’t even have broadband we had to petition for a few years so kind of surprising so many people are struggling to get more than 10mb.
Having a stable connection is most important to me though and many of the broadband providers have capacity issues.
I think the main problem with the big broadband providers is the lack of transparency and contracts. Customers should be allowed to switch after a month or a few months, not a year or more. Getting bad service and being tied down for so long shouldn’t be allowed, switching 2-3 times to find the right service could be years by then the service could also change…
What I find frustrating as a Sky customer is when I complain about regular wifi signal degradation (dead spots or fluctuating weak signal strength in areas) the customer service team just tell me to turn off devices in my home. I have 4 kids who all use phones and laptops and in this day and age that cannot be the solution. I pay for a service and Sky says sorry you have too many people/devices to provide good enough signal for everything. I feel that is not good enough for an advanced country like the UK in a time when wifi is really a necessity not a luxury. I applaud the government for pushing telecoms to improve further in rural areas and everywhere for that matter.
I get 3Mbps at home Paignton, Devon. We get about 10-12Mbps at work in Torquay.
It’s pretty shocking in places here in Devon.
i paid for virgin 30mb, they upped me to 50mb, then 70mb, then 100mb, all at the same price, within the space of a year or two. really cant grumble about speed.
at work however, fibre only arrived in this industrial estate a month ago,
As long as I get to watch my grumble vids I don’t mind.
10Mbps? I’d be over the moon! If we had a mobile signal too it would be like another planet. This is West Dorset. The District Council used to promise Superfast Broadband by 2016 -now I put in my post code (DT8 3NU, The Lemongrass Trading Company Ltd) and they say there are no plans at the moment.
The worst moment is when the schools finish. You can be sending an email at 3.45pm and it never arrives.
Is there some way of contacting this Infrastructure Group?
I get 50mbs download and 3mbs upstream my ISP:Virgin media (fibre optic), I can never complain since Virgin has offered a beautiful price/contract and once that contracts ends I will be sticking with virgin media and renewing contract in 2018 again, because I’m heavy internet user and use my network on the daily 24/7 365 days per year, so for me this has ticked all the boxes for me and yes I live in central London, so it’s even better that I’m pretty much very close to virgin media internet exchange box in central I believe, so yh I’m pretty lucky and delighted with their service, Virgin know how to deliver.
Well, here in Essex we get 3.4mb upload and 0.76mb download. We are about 2 miles from the exchange, at busy times I yearn for my old dial-up!
We struggled with BT Broadband for the last couple of years, 5Mbps if we were lucky. They have Infinity in the area, but no space in the box at the end of the road.
We managed to get the last of the Government grants to pay for Virgin to dig up the road and get us wired up, else we’d have been stuck with that. That gave us 50Mbps down and 5Mbps up. They’ve got a deal on at the moment so we recently upgraded.
Now we’re on 386Mbps down, 17Mbps up. £40 a month, so can’t complain.
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