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Round-up of customer service ratings
Monday 20 August 2007 08:32:57 by Andrew Ferguson

Generally we all love our broadband service providers when our connections are working well and despise them if they break. This makes choosing a provider with good customer support important for a stress-free broadband experience. This is where the many customer satisfaction surveys carried out by bodies like and our own monthly ratings can help people to decide between a shortlist of providers.

We last published a round-up in April 2007 and it is interesting to see the changes that have taken place since. After reporting what seemed to be a growth in discontent with certain providers, there appears to be signs of a recovery in the area of customer service, although on balance there is still much room for improvement.

Provider Aug 06 Feb 07 Jul 07 Change to..
Rating Sample Rating Sample Rating Sample Feb 07 Jul 07
AOL 49% 5455 46% 2084 47% 1519 -3 -2
Be 67% 342 70% 723 70% 847 +3 +3
BT Total 50% 15846 50% 8305 48% 8813 0 -2
Bulldog 41% 1334 38% 745 39% 452 -3 -2
Demon 67% 2104 51% 1117 55% 785 -16 -12
Eclipse 65% 1489 57% 1390 54% 1524 -8 -11
Entanet 73% 206 73% 419 74% 384 0 +1
F2S 55% 817 53% 867 60% 577 -2 +5
Griffin 66% 92 67% 64 66% 102 +1 0
Homechoice 60% 375 59% 218 57% 126 -1 -3
IDNET 80% 96 85% 177 87% 150 +5 +7
Karoo 53% 162 48% 302 55% 167 -5 +2
Madasafish 74% 615 68% 492 73% 357 -6 -1
Mistral 64% 125 57% 150 58% 94 -7 -6
Namesco 82% 307 64% 314 73% 193 -18 -9
Newnet 77% 155 75% 227 79% 244 -2 +2
Nildram 72% 866 63% 1163 60% 821 -9 -12
Orange 47% 5555 44% 7759 41% 5821 -3 -6
Pipex 51% 4747 45% 4309 50% 2020 -6 -1
Plusnet 50% 2714 51% 2611 60% 1366 +1 +10
Sky 43% 3867 49% 3331 51% 3783 +6 +8
Supanet 79% 489 69% 400 51% 275 -10 -28
Talk Talk 34% 4283 40% 3427 43% 4598 +6 +9
Tiscali 45% 9813 42% 5075 45% 3594 -3 0
UK Online 59% 440 53% 396 60% 256 -6 +1
Virgin Media 53% 9914 51% 9486 48% 10510 -2 -5
Zen 87% 897 76% 1149 78% 910 -11 -9

Talk Talk has now recovered to the same rating as it had in February 2006 before its rapid expansion into the unbundled telephone/broadband market. Sky is also showing a decent improvement suggesting the large unbundled broadband providers are getting to grips with things and maybe that Openreach is also performing better. has published the information that 19 million calls are made each year to broadband technical support lines, with the providers making £34 million a year from these calls (more detail over at Web User). At £1.79 per call on average, users obviously want to avoid calling their service provider's support service, or perhaps look more closely at areas like the cost of support calls before signing up to a service. These hidden costs are often missed in the comparisons made at time of purchase but can come back to hit those who suffer problems later. Of course online forums like our own can be very useful for users who have problems and are free to use.


Posted by rjohnloader over 9 years ago
Should see Eclipse going back up. Their new spamfilter needs more facilities but has cut down Spam considerably and perhaps because of this speeds have improved both maxima and peak time. As an old complainer about Eclipse I'm now getting far happier that they have finally realised that the customer does count
Posted by carrot63 over 9 years ago
While no-one exactly gets a brilliant rating, it's notable (although hardly surprising) that most of the more positive results are for the smaller providers - a shame it is they rather than the larger providers whose days seem to be numbered in the current climate. At least BTs purchase of Plusnet has given them a modest lift up from the appalling hole they dug for themselves last year.
Posted by arismariner over 9 years ago
Why is Waitrose ISP provider not listed in the ratings table? Which? magazine rate them highly.
Posted by keith_thfc over 9 years ago
Can someone remind me how the percentages in this TB survey were arrived at? Cheers.
Posted by emmu over 9 years ago
Waitrose is included in Madasafish why & when?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 9 years ago
Waitrose is a brand from the Brightview group, which is listed under their main retail brand of Madasafish.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 9 years ago
Percentages are arrived at by averaging the votes people make via
Posted by keith_thfc over 9 years ago
Cheers Andrew.

The big names (AOL, BT, Bulldog, Orange, Pipex, Talk Talk, Tiscali and Virgin) scoring 50% or less illustrate all too clearly that they really don't give a monkeys about customer satisfaction, hence why most normally need to lock you into a long term contract to stop you escaping..

What concerns me is when people see the biased, selective surveys like those from uswitch which suggest one of the above are worth choosing because they came 'top'. The reality is that its merely the 'best of the worst' they are recommending.
Posted by kirbycane over 9 years ago
I use two ISPs - and can't "rate" customer service on either over the last six months, because I've not used it. Entanet (via UKFSN) is truly excellent; PlusNet has been flawless these past six months, after a bad patch a while ago. Do the ratings include "not needed it", or just "satisfaction when I did"?
Posted by adslmax over 9 years ago

Can we have a monthly ratings instead of the last 6 months ratings ?

Entanet are the most excellent with customer services, prices and packages plus they always open-mind and honest and put customers first.
Posted by herdwick over 9 years ago
"Talk Talk has now recovered to the same rating as it had in February 2006" - yes, they were rubbish then and they are rubbish now.
Posted by jchamier over 9 years ago
I never rate cust services, because I never call. Hopefully that doesn't mean the same as a "bad" rating?!
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
I always look forward when thinkbroadband publish this table. For the most part the figures are basically what i expect, but it always makes interesting reading. As it is based on actual users opinions rather than some organisations spiel it always seems IMO pretty accurate also :)
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 9 years ago
The compare ISP tool displays the ratings on a month by month basis.

Not voting for something does not count as a 0 stars out of 5 vote, but rather no vote.
Posted by malchard over 9 years ago
whilst my experience with orange customer service has been relatively poor to date, at least if you also utilise their cell phone package, calls to customer support are free even if you wait a long time for them to answer the phone.
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
Interesting stuff, but the presentation of the table strikes me as a bit weird: there's as much (more?) green on the dross ISPs (Sky, TalkTalk, who's customers aren't quite as unhappy as they used to be) as there is on top-rated ISPs like IDnet, and there's no green at all for still highly rated (but not as good as they were) ISPs like Zen.

Don't forget Brightview was recently bought by BT while Ofcom were (as usual) asleep at the wheel, it remains to be seen what effect that has on Brightview perceived QoS.
Posted by MCM999 over 9 years ago
"there's as much green on the dross ISPs as there is on top-rated ISPs" Green doesn't signify anything other than that the ISP involved is apparently improving. Zen has no green because it is worse than it was albeit at 78% still third of those listed having slipped from first.
Posted by alfier over 9 years ago
Eclipse is Rubbish! due to 1.6MB on 8MB line Asked for multiple tests several times followed by - Please note that should the issue be proven to be caused by your equipment, setup or internal wiring you will be charged £169.20. By responding to this email and perusing this as a fault you agree that all requested checks have been performed and that you understand the possible charges could be raised, should the broadband fault be outside of our supplier(s) equipment/network domain.
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