25 September 2023

New ACCC guide for slow broadband

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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has published a guide for fixed wireless customers of the National Broadband Network (NBN) on how to deal with broadband speed problems.

The ACCC has also updated its guidance for retailers on how to advertise broadband speed claims.

Chair of ACCC, Rod Sims said customers on fixed wireless networks, many living in regional and rural areas, were still facing broadband congestion during the busy evening period, many not getting speeds anywhere near the maximum advertised in their plan.

“This can be due to factors including distance from the nearest tower, line of sight issues or congestion on individual cells,” Mr Sims said.

“NBN Co has committed to provide broadband providers with information about congested cells and is working to reduce congestion for fixed wireless customers.”

He said the ACCC’s guidance gave advice on how consumers could seek compensation or other remedies from their provider if they received poor speeds; how they could obtain more information about their service; and the nature and limitations of fixed wireless services.

“We’re publishing this guidance to help fixed wireless consumers be more confident in seeking redress from their service provider if their speeds are lower than represented,” Mr Sims said.

“Consumers in rural and remote areas, like those in any other parts of Australia, should not be paying for speeds they are not getting.”

He said providers had a responsibility to deliver a service that met the speed and performance they advertised.

“If services fall short of what has been advertised, broadband providers must offer remedies, technical support and information to customers,” Mr Sims said.

“The ACCC will continue to address consumer issues in the provision of broadband services, including misleading speed and performance claims made by providers.”

The new guide can be accessed on the ACCC website at this PS News link.

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