We’ve seen how ISPs have advertised how fast they are and how customers should join them. For the most part the speeds advertised are theoretical as there are many factors that affect speed, such as the servers you’re connecting to, how many people are using the internet, whether you’re connected over WiFi or Ethernet, and so on.
However over in the UK, broadcast regulator Ofcom has announced that starting from the 1st of March, 2019, UK ISPs must provide customers with more realistic figures when it comes to speed, especially during peak times. They will also be given 30 calendar days to improve internet speeds should it fall below a minimum guaranteed level, in which failing to do so will allow customers to break their contracts with the ISP without incurring any penalties.
As it stands customers already have that right, however at the moment ISPs do not have a fixed time to resolve the issues, which means that in theory ISPs could keep telling customers they’re working on it indefinitely, thus preventing customers from exiting their contracts unless they’re willing to pay a penalty for doing so.
According to Lindsey Fussell, Ofcom’s consumer group director, “Broadband customers must know what they’re signing up to. These protections will close the gap between the broadband speeds people are sold, and what they actually receive. To give people extra confidence, we are making it easier to walk away – without penalty – if companies fail to deliver.”