The days of UK broadband providers being able to get away with underachieving internet speeds might finally be over. From today (March 1), broadband providers must provide new customers with a guaranteed minimum speed, which they must live up to.
Under the new Ofcom rules, if the speeds to not improve within a month, those customers can leave their contracts early without incurring a penalty.
Under the previous rules, ISPs were only required to provide the minimum speed information if customers requested it. However, providers who’ve agreed to Ofcom’s voluntary code of conduct, must now do so whether the speeds are requested or not.
The new rules also places the 30-day limit on providers to achieve improvements, in line with the minimum guaranteed download speeds. Previously, there was no fixed time limit on when the improvements had to take place.
The updated code of conduct, which all of the major providers are on board with, also requires ISPs to offer more realistic speeds customers can expect at peak times.
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Providers must also ensure they provide the same guarantees to consumers, regardless of the technology they use to access the internet. So, it makes no difference if you’re on a copper, cable or fibre connection.
The right to leave the contract also apples to landline and TV packages purchased as a bundle with their broadband, if speeds fall short of those promised.
“These protections mean broadband shoppers can buy with confidence,” Ofcom said in a blog post. “Before they sign up, customers will be told their minimum internet speed. And if companies break that promise, they’ll have to sort it out quickly, or let the customer walk away.”
Is your broadband provider constantly falling short of promised speeds? Will you use the new rules to get out of the contract? Let us know @TrustedReviews on Twitter.