Who do you have to call around here for decent internet and mobile services?
Tired of being left on hold by your telco? Internet connection not delivering the speeds you were promised? Our latest survey finds telcos have a lot to do to keep their customers satisfied.
Satisfaction with mobile service providers has remained fairly static. Overall, 56% of mobile customers were happy with the service they were getting, compared with 54% in our 2017 survey.
Vodafone, which has the biggest share of the mobile market, retained its place at the bottom of our table with a score of 51%.
Top of the table? For the third year in a row, it was Skinny. The Spark offshoot outperformed its parent company – as well as the two other brands in our survey – with a satisfaction score of 77%.
The pre-pay service also rated above average for value for money (76%), while Spark got the lowest rating, scoring just 41%. The industry average was 47%.
Download this graph in PDF format here. (15.7 KB)
Download this graph in PDF format here. (15.3 KB)
GUIDE TO THE TABLES OUR DATA are from a nationally representative survey of 2150 New Zealanders aged 18 years and over, which took place in December 2018. Companies are those with 30 responses or more (response numbers are in brackets). Overall satisfaction shows the percentage of consumers who rated their internet/mobile retailer 8, 9 or 10 on a scale from 0 (very dissatisfied) to 10 (very satisfied).
Spark and Vodafone are the biggest players in our telco market.
Spark holds an estimated 43% of the broadband market and 32% of the mobile market. It also owns Bigpipe and Skinny. Bigpipe offers broadband only while Skinny offers mobile and internet services.
Vodafone has an estimated 26% share of the broadband market and 41% of the mobile market.
Vocus Communications is the third biggest player in broadband, with a 13% share. Vocus owns Flip, Orcon and Slingshot.
2degrees is best known as a mobile operator (with 21% of the market), but has expanded into broadband.
Other companies in our latest survey include MyRepublic, Now NZ, Stuff Fibre and Trustpower.
MyRepublic set up shop in 2013 and is owned by Singapore-based MyRepublic Group. It offers home phone and broadband.
Now NZ is a Napier-based company that has been around since 2002. It offers home phone and broadband. Spark has a 37% holding in the company.
Stuff Fibre is owned by media organisation Stuff. It offers fibre services and movies through StuffPix.
Energy company Trustpower now sells home phone and internet plans, as well as electricity and gas.
Telcos continue to top the Commerce Commission’s list of the most complained-about traders. Last year, the commission received 584 complaints about the telco industry
The commission said many consumers reported that telcos made claims about their products that weren’t easy to substantiate. “Consumers have explained that they were not sure about a trader’s offer of the ‘best price’ or ‘best deal’ in the market. Other complainants allege that a trader promised a speed and quality of broadband that the consumer did not believe they received,” it said.
In 2018, the commission laid charges against Spark and Vodafone for alleged breaches of the Fair Trading Act.
Spark pleaded guilty to charges brought against it for over-charging customers and failing to disclose the conditions of a $100 credit available to customers signing up to a particular broadband plan.
Vodafone is facing charges for allegedly making false representations in invoices sent to customers and for claims made for its FibreX broadband service. The commission said the name FibreX misled consumers into thinking they were getting a full fibre optic-service, when FibreX is delivered via Vodafone’s cable network. Vodafone has pleaded guilty to some charges relating to FibreX but is defending others.
The TDR can look at unresolved complaints to do with billing, customer service, hardware faults, contracts, network performance, or something similar. This includes pre-paid mobiles.
TDR can consider: