Ofcom reveals UK consumer telecoms value for money is improving

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom has published a report into what people pay for their communications services and it implies we’re getting better at shopping around.

The report is titled ‘Pricing trends for communications services in the UK’. Among its headline findings are that, while some people are still paying a fair bit more for their broadband, mobile, etc, they’re getting less ripped off than they were a few years ago.

For example, around four million UK homes with ADSL are outside their lock-in period and could upgrade to a better service for less money. Standard BT ADSL is apparently £42.99 per month, while BT’s superfast services start at £24.99 per month. The same goes for mobile, with a lot of people staying on plans that included handset subsidies even after the lock-in period is over.

“Broadband and mobile firms often target their best offers and discounts at people who negotiate or switch provider,” said the Ofcom announcement. “So, consumers who shop around, and know when their initial contract period ends, typically pay less than those who don’t.” The usual suspects such as uSwitch said much the same.

The implication of some of Ofcom’s findings is that the CRM/BSS and general customer care systems of communications providers are geared towards exploiting people who lack the inclination to shop around. Presumably some are more proactive than others when it comes to informing their customers about the best deals and it would be interesting to see if they’re rewarded with greater customer loyalty.

Ofcom pricing infographic

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