Wednesday, 17 October 2018 05:07

TIO complaints show rise for the year, drop for Q4 Featured

TIO complaints show rise for the year, drop for Q4 Pixabay

Complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman from residential consumers and small businesses rose for the financial year 2018, but were down for the last quarter, according to a report from the TIO on Wednesday.

Phone and Internet service complaints were up by 6.2% for the year, but there was a drop of 17.8% in the number of plaints in the final quarter compared to the third quarter.

Queensland saw the biggest growth in complaints, up 13.2% while Western Australia's complaints grew by 10.7%. The largest number of complaints came from NSW (31.6%), followed by Victoria (28.4%).

According to the TIO:

  • A total of 167,831 complaints were received, an increase of 6.2%;
  • Complaints overall dropped 17.8% in Q4 of 2017/18 compared to Q3;
  • A total of 146,958 complaints (87.6%) were from residential consumers;
  • A total of 20,433 complaints (12.2%) were from small businesses;
  • Complaints from small businesses increased 8.7% in 2017/18 to 20,433;
  • Fifty-two potential systemic issues were notified to providers, and 30 systemic matters resulted in the provider agreeing to, or making, changes to its system, process or practice;
  • A total of 51,328 complaints were about mobile phone services (30.6%), followed by complaints about multiple services 49,875 (29.7%);
  • A total of 14,589 complaints were recorded in 2017/18 about establishing a connection to the national broadband network. Between 1 January and 30 June, complaints per 1000 premises added to the NBN decreased from 9.2 to 9.0; and
  • A total of 27,008 complaints were recorded in 2017/18 about service quality on the NBN. Between 1 January and 30 June, complaints per 1000 premises added to the network decreased from 4.1 to 3.2.

Ombudsman Judi Jones said: "The number of complaints about telecommunications services in Australia appears to be turning a corner.

“Declining complaints across all landline, mobile and Internet services are a positive indicator of recent industry, government and regulator efforts to address the disruption to telecommunications products and services of the past few years.

“We all want to get to the same point, a positive consumer experience where expectations are more likely to be met. The TIO continues to be committed to reducing complaints, and our purpose and unique role remains clear – to ensure residential consumers and small businesses have access to a free, fair, independent and effective alternative dispute resolution service.”

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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