Regulators reveal official stats on most complained about broadband, mobile and pay TV providers

Oliver Gill
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Which telecoms firms receive the most complaints? Ofcom revealed its official statistics today (Source: Vodafone)

It's a constant source of debate among friends, families and work colleagues: but who is getting the worst service from their mobile, internet or pay TV company?

Today Ofcom, the UK's telecoms regulator, revealed its official complaints figures on the best and worst mobile phone, broadband and pay TV firms during the first three months of the year.

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BT received the most complaints (34) per 100,000 people in the first quarter of 2017, pipping TalkTalk who moved from third place last year to second position.

The Ofcom report said: "BT’s main complaint driver related to faults, service and provision issues."

Plusnet and EE (both owned by BT) rounded off the top four.

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At the other end of the scale a gold star went to Sky, which maintained its status as teacher's pet with only eight complaints for every 100,000 customers. Second best was Virgin Media (13 complaints). Both firms were lower than the industry average of 21.

(Source: Ofcom)


Vodafone was streets ahead of its rivals as the most complained about mobile phone firm, more than double than second-placed TalkTalk. Customers mostly complained about billing, pricing and charges, Ofcom said.

Nevertheless, the FTSE 100 giant dramatically cut its complaints per 100,000 from 24 this time last year to 17.

The other larger UK operators – O2, EE and Three – had markedly lower complaints statistics, between three and four per 100,000.

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Tesco Mobile has consistently topped many recent polls in terms of performance. And today's Ofcom report revealed this had not changed. Less than half a person (this is possible due to rounding, regulators said) making a complaint per 100,000 customers.

(Source: Ofcom)

Pay TV

BT has invested significant amounts of time and money into its TV offering, splashing the cash on sports rights in particular.

However, the number of complaints BT is receiving is on the up at 19 per 100,000, more than double that of Virgin Media. It is also almost four times the industry normal of five. Similar to Vodafone in relation to mobile complaints, customer problems were mainly on billing, pricing and charges issues.

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Sky got a gold star for their complaints performance, with two for every 100,000 customers.

(Source: Ofcom)


BT may be relieved to hear one of its subsidiaries, Plusnet, is no longer on the top naughty step as the most complained about landline provider. It slipped to second place with 21 complaints per 100,000. It was pipped by TalkTalk, which jumped from third place last year to the top spot in 2017.

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Perhaps much to the chagrin of other providers, Sky had the fewest complaints and was the best performer in this category as well. It had just seven per 100,000 compared with an industry average of 16.

(Source: Ofcom)

How far have they come? Comparisons to last year

(Source: Ofcom)

And over time? Are things getting better?

(Source: Ofcom)

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