Ofcom has put rules in place for a new “one touch” system for switching to a new broadband provider after its own research found the process was often too complex and time consuming.
The UK media regulator unveiled ‘One Touch Switch’ last week in efforts to make it easier for consumers to search for better broadband deals and commit to moving from one provider to another.
Ofcom’s research found that around 40% of people had balked at the process of moving to a new broadband supplier due to the hassle involved.
This should now change as the new, faster process will enable consumers to switch in just 24 hours and claim for compensation “if things go wrong”.
Ofcom group director Lindsey Fussell believes that the new switching service comes at just the right time as some households are struggling with finances and seeking out new broadband deals could lower bills.
The simplified process, which also applies to phone lines, will need to be implemented by all suppliers by April 2023.
However, BT believes that the rules should be more wide reaching and apply to any broadband services tied to TV subscriptions, such as those offered by Virgin Media and Sky.
A spokesperson for BT said that this would ensure that consumers opting for a “triple play” bundle would not be left behind.
The new system is a good starting point though, and regulation expert Richard Neudegg believes that it will be a necessity as “next generation services” become widely available.
He added: “This solution will help future-proof broadband switching and give consumers much-needed peace of mind when it comes to getting a better connection.”