Telco complaints hit new highs in AU

Dylan Bushell-Embling
04 May 2011
Daily News

Australian consumer group ACCAN expects officials to intervene with regulation after telecom complaints rose again to another record high in the March quarter.

New complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) grew 31.5% sequentially over the first three months of the year to nearly 60,000, the TIO has revealed.

Customer service gripes topped the list, representing a quarter of all complaints, followed by faults at 20% and complaint handling issues at 18%.

Mobile services represented 60% of all complaints, compared to 22% for landline phones and 17% for internet services.



The company has long been in the spotlight over user dissatisfaction with its network quality and coverage, as well as a series network outages. A law firm is also preparing a class action suit that has so far attracted over 20,000 plaintiffs.

But the Australian Communications Consumer Action Network (ACCAN) said the problem is more endemic.

“The industry will point the finger at Vodafone and say, yet again, that there is no problem,” ACCAN CEO Teresa Corbin said. “The truth of the matter is that complaints about customer service and complaint-handling issues continue to climb across the board.”

TIO statistics show that complaints about Telstra and Optus, the main mobile rivals of Vodafone Australia and partner Hutchison Australia, increased by a respective 12.5% and 7.5%.

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