Virgin Media most complained-about broadband, landline and pay-TV provider

New quarterly data from regulator Ofcom for Q3 2023 reveal frustrations with services and – worse – with how complaints are handled 

Ofcom is the regulator for communications in the UK. As part of that remit, it receives complaints from customers about their broadband, landline, pay-monthly mobile and pay-TV services. It compiles that data by provider and service, which it shares every three months. 

Happy days? A Virgin Media van in Birmingham, photo by Elliott Brown

Happy days? A Virgin Media van in Birmingham, photo by Elliott Brown

The latest release of data is for July to September 2023. There was a slight increase in complaints about landline, fixed broadband and pay-TV services as compared with the previous quarter (April to June), with complaints about pay-monthly mobile remaining consistent. 

As we reported three months ago, Talk Talk was the most complained about landline and broadband provider – but since then things have changed quite starkly. 

Virgin Media received 32 complaints per 10,000 customers for its broadband service – twice the average across providers. Sky had just 5 complaints per 10,000. 

In 46% of cases, complaints to Ofcom about Virgin Media’s broadband concerned the way the provider handled an initial complaint, well above the 37% average. Virgin scored above average for complaints about billing, pricing and charging – at 20% compared to the 17% average. 

With landline services, Virgin Media again came out worst, with 19 complaints per 10,000 customers compared to the average of 8. Again, Sky did best with just 2 complaints per 10,000. And again, of complaints to Ofcom about Virgin Media’s service, a high proportion – 49% – were about the way an initial complaint to the company had been handled. This was well above the industry average of 38%. 

Virgin was also the most complained about of pay-TV services, with 20 complaints per 10,000 customers, well above the industry average of 7. Again, 51% of these complaints to Ofcom were about the way Virgin Media handled an initial complaint. Again, this is above the 47% average. 

Basically, customer service needs work. 

As we’ve observed before, these statistics are useful in helping companies identify shortcomings in the services they provide. Things can also be rectified quickly, and we’ll see how Virgin Media improves in the next release of Ofcom data. 

The data also provides evidence that in some cases even the worst offenders still offer good services overall. O2 was rankled most complained about mobile provider, but with just 6 complaints per 10,000 customers – really not much above the industry average of 3, or the least complained about provider, Sky (again!) at 2. 

To see more about the data and methodology, see Ofcom report: Complaints about broadband, landline, mobile and pay-TV services. 

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