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Virgin Media remains on top as Ofcom names best and worst broadband providers

Katharine Byrne
27 Jun 2014
Virgin Media
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Latest broadband, landline, mobile phone and pay TV complaints data reveals the best and worst companies

Virgin Media has generated the least number of complaints for both broadband, Pay TV and landline telephone services, while EE has been named and shamed as the UK's worst mobile phone company, according to the latest industry figures. 

The data comes from Ofcom's thirteenth quarterly complaints report, which was published on Friday. 

The total volume of telecoms and pay TV complaints rose in the first quarter of 2014, with complaints about landline, broadband and mobile pay-as-you-go services all rising on the end of last year. In better news, complaints about mobile pay-monthly and pay TV services remained unchanged. 

"Publishing complaints data is a key part of our work to provide useful comparative information for consumers, and drive improvements in quality of service across the communications sector," said Claudio Pollack, Director of Ofcom’s Consumer Group. "The report highlights the performance of providers relative to each other. This is valuable information that consumers may wish to consider alongside other factors such as price and availability, for example, when choosing a provider."

EE, which Ofcom now presents as a combined form of Orange, T-Mobile and 4GEE, reclaimed its crown as the most complained about broadband provider, with 0.42 complaints per 1,000 customers during the first quarter of 2014. Complaints were mainly driven by service faults, billing and issues with changing provider. BT was the second worst broadband provider, receiving 0.33 complaints per 1,000 customers, with TalkTalk coming a close third with 0.24 complaints per 1,000 customers. 

Virgin Media and Sky remain the best broadband providers, with 0.07 and 0.09 complaints per 1,000 customers respectively. 

EE also topped the list of most complained about pay-monthly telephone companies. Ofcom says, "At 0.12 per 1,000 customers, EE’s pay-monthly mobile complaints volumes were twice the industry average and largely driven by issues related to complaints handling, billing and issues with changing provider." Virgin Mobile was also above the industry average for pay-monthly telephone complaints with 0.07 complaints per 1,000 customers.

At the other end of the table, Three's pay-monthly telephone service generated the least number of complaints for the first time since 2011, with just 0.04 complaints per 1,000 customers. The company replaces O2, who had previously held that position for thirteen consecutive quarters.

TalkTalk was named as the most complained about landline telephone provider, generating 0.28 complaints per 1,000 customers. Ofcom said these complaints were largely related to service faults, complaints handling and billing. BT came in second with 0.23 complaints per 1,000 customers, while Sky came third with 0.10 complaints per 1,000 customers. Once again, Virgin Media received the fewest number of complaints for its landline service with 0.07 per customers. 

BT also performed poorly in its pay TV services, receiving 0.25 complaints per 1,000 customers, which is five times the industry average. This was mainly due to service faults, complaints handling and billing issues. TalkTalk came second with 0.19 complaints per 1,000 customers, while Sky and Virgin Media continued to generate the least number of complaints with both companies generating just 0.02 per 1,000 customers. 

Virgin Media’s Chief Executive Officer Tom Mockridge commented, "Whilst it is great to see customers have told Ofcom we are better than BT, Sky and TalkTalk, there is always room for improvement. We believe we can do even more and are working hard to deliver the best customer experience every time."