Broadband A Special Focus For The ACCC This Year

Broadband A Special Focus For The ACCC This Year

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has announced areas it will give special attention to this year – and broadband is among them.

ACCC broadband focus Image: geralt

Early this week, ACCC Chairman Rod Sims outlined compliance and enforcement priorities for the Commission during 2018.

“Consumer issues in the provision of broadband services, including addressing misleading speed claims and statements made during the transition to the NBN, have become one of the ACCC’s most prominent issues in the past two years and highlights the importance of both our consumer and competition focus,” said Mr. Sims.

Complaints relating to the NBN increased 160 per cent in the last financial year, sparking among other things an inquiry into NBN wholesale standards.

The Chairman also said the first ACCC Measuring Broadband Australia program report will soon be released.

The broadband monitoring program  involves testing occurring in thousands of households across the country to determine typical speeds and performance over the National Broadband Network at various times of the day. The goal of the program is to better inform Australians on whether a broadband service is delivering on the value they signed up for and to put pressure on internet service providers (ISPs) to compete on performance as well as price.

Where problems exist, it will also help identify if the issue is with the NBN or an ISP not buying sufficient capacity.

As well as testing in NBN-connected households, a small number were to be recruited that are connected to alternative, NBN-type and legacy networks; enabling a more complete picture of the state of broadband performance in Australia.

Testing is being carried out using the SamKnows “WhiteBox”, a monitoring solution that has been used in 30 countries.

If you aren’t participating in the program, you can use our free broadband speed test to get an indication on how your connection is performing at any given point in time.

Mr Sims also said the ACCC’s efforts in ensuring truth in advertising relating to broadband speeds will continue to make it easier for Australians to choose a service provider.

Instead of  advertising maximum speed levels, which can be far slower during peak periods, more ISP’s are indicating standard/typical evening speeds.

“You have seen a number of ACCC enforcement actions in 2017 and can expect further interventions this year,” said Mr. Sims.

You can read the ACCC Chairman’s full speech, delivered at a CEDA (Committee for Economic Development of Australia)  event on Tuesday, here.

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