ACCC launches public inquiry into internet speeds

Public inquiry into internet companies’ failure to deliver advertised broadband speeds.

ACCC launches public inquiry into internet speeds

The ACCC has launched a public inquiry into why internet companies are failing to deliver the advertised maximum broadband speeds to their customers.

The public inquiry opened for submissions on Tuesday, after the ACCC expressed concerns that advertising the potential maximum speed might mislead or misrepresent the speeds that can be consistently achieved, especially during peak periods.

"I think we have got concerns with how broadband claims are getting advertised. It is a really important consumer issue that we are currently getting a number of complaints about," said ACCC chairman Rod Sims.

With the information collected from the study, the ACCC is likely to call for amendments to advertising laws around internet plans, so that customers know exactly which minimum and maximum internet speeds they should receive. Furthermore, the ACCC is looking to use this information to implement a national monitoring system.

Globally, Australia is significantly behind the rest of the world in internet speed transparency. In the US, internet providers are required to tell consumers the download speed, upload speed, latency and packet loss they should expect. While in the UK, consumers can terminate contracts without penalty if an internet provider doesn't meet minimum promised speeds. The UK regulator is even considering implementing automatic compensation for customers when speeds fall below expectations.

Read more at www.smh.com.au
Share your views with the ACCC.

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    COMMENTS

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    MICK
    28th Jul 2016
    10:43am
    The review needs to be a lot wider given the behaviour of the big telcos.
    We were disconnected for over 2 months and the Optus made no attempt to resolve a problem of their creation. And when finally resolved Optus refused to pay compensation as set out in the Telecommunication Act claiming a MSD (Mass Service Disruption) for 2 months which was a lie provided without one shred of proof.
    This is the sort of behaviour one has to put up with when dealing with this industry and the ACCC knows about it but plays coy and will not take the telcos concerned to task.
    Anybody wanting to find out how bad the behaviour in the industry is only needs to google:

    "ProductReview Optus"

    And by all means do a similar thing for the other telcos. The bar chart of complaints are horrifying and add fuel to the fire of how the ACCC and ASIC are no more than window dressing whilst at the same time refusing to address an industry which has become aggressive and adversarial to customers with zero accountability.
    GrayComputing
    28th Jul 2016
    10:48am
    Do we need all this speed anyway?
    The ACC should also force service providers to have low rate plans for minimum web users.
    While business and video addicts may benefit most of the members of this group are paying the providers and the NBN a lot for bandwidth and download limit we rarely use.
    I suggest we barely use only 5% of the lowest NBN plan that is available.
    So unlike electricity where the user pays for what they consume we retirees are forced into fixed tariffs irrespective of our actual consumption!
    In effect we end up subsidising the NBN bandwidth and downloading HOGS to our own determent. ACC take action on this matter
    PlanB
    28th Jul 2016
    11:55am
    Gray, you may not need the fastest speed and maybe I don't either BUT think outside the Square -- what about Drs and health care workers and businesses -- there are many that are now being diagnosed through the internet -- because they are unable to travel LARGE distances so do spare a thought for those poor souls! Also the Children of the outback towns that are educated via the internet.
    It is NOT all about US you know.
    KSS
    28th Jul 2016
    12:25pm
    GrayComputing, it really isn't a question of whether people need the speed or not, its about whether you get what you are paying for. Being seduced into buying something (at least partially based on the advertising), then not receiving the service you paid for is the issue. Telcos should not be advertising services they cannot deliver or cannot deliver consistently. Saying they did deliver the advertised speeds between 3am-3.30am on February 29 would not, in my opinion, meet the service delivery criteria when at all other times the speed is less than that advertised.
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    12:29pm
    Way Way LESS ! :-( :-(
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    12:31pm
    GreyComputing... You are absolutely Right !!
    Scrivener
    28th Jul 2016
    1:00pm
    I would join an ISP today who provided a real Pensioner discount and let me design my own plan.
    Scrivener
    28th Jul 2016
    1:04pm
    Remote surgery is now possible using surgical robotics. But in WA it is near impossible to do medical teleconferencing or do remote surgery. Country doctors need specialist consult help more than most would ever understand. NBN is very important to country hospitals and country medical practices all over Australia, Mr. TurnBULL.
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    1:07pm
    Scrivener ..So would I :-)
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    12:27pm
    I sent this Message Yesterday !! :-(
    But I wont Lie It took me 3 attempts just to open this Site ?? :-( :-( :-(
    And some are even WORSE !!:-(
    Rebooting is common now, in the last 6,8 Months its Annoying to say the least :-(
    Lucky Country Benefits :-)
    Scrivener
    28th Jul 2016
    12:56pm
    I never get more than 4.3MBPS and I am paying for 24MBPS. NBN was due to be instlled in our area three years ago - still waiting, Mr. Turnbull - mostly 'Bull'.
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    1:10pm
    What are we paying for ?? I've had to Reboot 5 times in an Hour today and its as SLOW as a Wet Week :-( :-( Emails wont open ! Etc GRRRR !! :-(
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    1:12pm
    Telstra's Fault Finding Tool needs a Fault Finding Tool :-( :-(
    Fredklaus
    28th Jul 2016
    1:28pm
    Like,we need a full enquiry into all actions of service providers
    particolor
    28th Jul 2016
    1:53pm
    Go to their Site and Butter wouldn't melt in their Mouths :-(
    crazy one
    28th Jul 2016
    6:11pm
    over the last 18 months I have had troubles with the internet being slow and kicking me off and every time I rang to report they keep saying that it was the modem and this went for 4 modems with no improvement so I rang the TCO about it and all they said was we can only ring them on your behalf. Through all this time I was getting kick off and the internet speed was getting down to 0.532 or lower. In the end they found out that it was the outside line causing all the troubles but Optus told my internet provider that they can only agree with it is their fault for they last month but my provider will agree with 2month but I am out of pocket for the rest of the time so I am sick on how things are done in Australia as we are only treated like idiots in Australia by our great Government and internet providers as long as they are getting their money they do not care.

    After all this trouble my speed is up now but for how long I do not like to say
    particolor
    29th Jul 2016
    5:11pm
    Same !!:-( They absolutely Destroyed my Modem with an Outage ! OK ! So they admitted it and a Week or so later sent me a New One FREE+ Free Postage !! The amount of the New Modem kept appearing on my bill for Months !! GRR :-( Right up to RED LETTER Day Despite My Numerous Calls !! And every call they told me it had been Rectified and Adjusted, Yeah Right !! And still the Demand GRRRR :-(
    I fixed that with one Phone Call when I "Politely told the What Day it was :-) :-) It was fixed Immediately . I wonder how many Older Folks just Cough Up !! :-( :-(
    PS.. Normal Service has now been Resumed with the New Modem and like the Older One it is UTS ("Not allowed to swear on this Site" :-)..)
    Slow as a wet week in Siberia and Goes on Vacation Often !! :-( Thanks Telstra :-)
    Rae
    28th Jul 2016
    6:27pm
    Off topic but is anyone else paying a $2.20 a month charge to Telstra for a paper bill.

    I have been for years but I saw a friends bill today and they don't get charged a fee for a paper bill.

    Am wondering why there are different rules for different people.
    Rae
    29th Jul 2016
    4:21pm
    Found out. Pensioners don't pay that $2.20 cents for each months bill but self funded retirees do. Yet another discrimination.