Broadband News

Results of BBC Watchdog Broadband survey published

BBC Watchdog now in its new regular 8pm Wednesday slot, has published the results from its survey that allowed viewers to rate their broadband provider in a number of categories. The full results can be found on their website.

The BBC is keen to point out that the results are not a scientific statistical survey, but a snapshot of the personal opinions from the 50,000 voters. We have combined the results into one table:

Results from BBC Watchdog Broadband Survey
Tables 1 and 4 combined


Proportion of 3s and 4s(*)

Sum of 3s and 4s(**)

Global 95% 166
Waitrose 94% 1308
Zen 93% 4742
Madasafish 91% 2031
Metronet 90% 426
Nildram 86% 1619
Telewest 85% 8062
Freedom2Surf 82% 2160
Tesco 80% 2216
Demon 77% 2515
Eclipse 76% 2781
Virgin 74% 17881
NTL 73% 10399
Supanet 72% 1131
Plusnet 70% 5014
UK Online 70% 987
AOL Europe 69% 16977
Force 9 69% 518
One.Tel 66% 585
BT 64% 18862
Homecall 62% 528
Pipex 59% 5772
Tiscali 53% 11973
ToucanSurf 52% 895
Sky 49% 6202
Talk Talk 47% 10802
Orange 42% 9036
Bulldog 37% 1162
Biscit 23% 258

This table lists all of the companies surveyed according to the proportion of 'satisfied' or 'extremely satisfied' votes. The total number of these 'satisfied' votes for each company was worked out as a percentage of the total number of people who responded about that company. The companies are listed in order of satisfaction.
This table lists - in order of the total number of votes cast - the companies that, overall, viewers who took part in the survey were most happy with. It was calculated by adding together the 'satisfied' and 'extremely satisfied' ratings in each of the five categories. This total is the number listed after each company's name.

Watchdog are aware that some providers such as Be, Entanet resellers and Vodafone @ Home are missing from the ratings. This was due to the fact they were not features in the letters sent to Watchdog. has its own ratings system, where you can rate your broadband provider on the categories of reliability, speed and customer service. This rating system is what is used to populate the Rating column in our ISP listings. For more detail including ratings for the last six months our compare tool may be useful. We see between 55,000 and 75,000 ratings each month.


We can see why Plusnet have retained the Metronet brand - 90% satisfaction vs 70% at Plusnet and 69% at Force9 :-)

  • herdwick
  • over 13 years ago

Personally i dont think the survey is much use at all, which is a shame :( They could have calculated results with a much better method then they actually did, if you look at the watchdog website you soon get an idea how pointless most of it is with the likes of tiscali and BT being both some of the faves and also at the same time the worse?? go figure!

  • over 13 years ago

The method of presenting results is confusing with the same company near top of the Best and also near bottom of the Worst. The percentage satisfaction figure is more easily understood though differences of a few percent (and corresponding relative ranking) are probably not significant.

  • canopus137
  • over 13 years ago

Given Watchdog's flawed number crunching, the only conclusion reached seems to be that we have big providers who have the most customers (surprise there then), and Biscit are no good (another intake of breath). What about all the ISPs in between? Pathetic.

  • carrot63
  • over 13 years ago

You can tell that BBC Watchdog are not used to conducting surveys/statistical analysis - tables 1 & 2 are useless as it's obvious that the ISPs with the most customers will come out on top! however tables 3 & 4 probably paint a more realist picture.

i can't see any way to provide feedback on the survery, other than the general contact form at:

  • nettech
  • over 13 years ago

I guess the isps with the largest staffs just spent time filling in forms via the ir marketing department. I can't believe for a second, there are that many satisfied talk talk customers... Personal experience and my own person al survey of people I know shows that talk talk is most complained about... Be interesting to see the corresponding server records.... ie listed by ip address...

  • hoodamanny
  • over 13 years ago

well it looks good the way thinkbroadband have provided the info i.e. Brightview Group in 3 out of the top 4 1st 2nd and 4th would have been good to see the total number of users each isp had to work out how many % of user base voted

  • adamtemp
  • over 13 years ago

haha i have to say i agree some what with hoodamnny. I have read so many complaint forums about virgin yet they are very highly rated. It would have been a blow if they're ratings had been very poor during their rebranding to Virgin convenient.

  • lierobs
  • over 13 years ago

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