Vodafone / Spark take customer beating as 2degrees takes plaudits

Vodafone and Spark have a long way to go before their customers feel satisfied with their service, according to a damning Consumer NZ’s latest internet service provider (ISP) survey.

Vodafone and Spark have a long way to go before their customers feel satisfied with their service, according to a damning Consumer NZ’s latest internet service provider (ISP) survey.

With both telco giants rating below average in nearly every category, Vodafone and Spark's performance also dropped since the last survey in 2013 with overall satisfaction with ISPs at 68 percent, down from 74 percent.

A key measure of an ISP’s performance is the reliability of the connection and speed with Consumer NZ CEO Sue Chetwin says the survey results showed a decline in reliability ratings.

Disconnections and dropouts remained problems with 57 percent of survey respondents saying they occasionally had problems and 15 percent saying they happened regularly.

Most people also had problems with speed – only 20 percent said they had never had slower-than-expected speed - this was down from 22 percent in the 2013 survey.

The top three performers, with more than 90 percent satisfaction, were Actrix, Inspire Net and Snap - these companies have been among the top five performers for the past three years.

Showing improvement were Slingshot (up 9 percent) and Orcon (up 4 percent) in overall satisfaction.

Around 9 percent of respondents had switched to ultra-fast broadband - they were more likely to be satisfied or very satisfied (73 percent) with connection speed.

UFB customers were also more likely to be satisfied they were getting value for money but ratings for this measure weren’t high: just 58 percent of UFB customers thought they were getting value for money.

Chetwin says recent price hikes were unlikely to improve value for money ratings.

"Spark and Vodafone have both raised rates and smaller providers are expected to follow," she adds.

For the third year running 2degrees was the standout performer in terms of mobile service providers with eghty-seven percent of members rating its services as good or very good, up 4 percent on the last survey.

However Vodafone and Spark both scored around 70 percent overall satisfaction.

Consumer members on pre-pay plans were more likely to be satisfied their provider was delivering value for money – 61 percent of pre-pay customers were either satisfied or very satisfied they were getting bang for their buck compared with 49 percent on fixed-term contracts.

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