Orange's withdrawal of its free broadband offer late last year led it to be the most complained about mobile provider, Ofcom has said.
In its latest quarterly complaints report, the regulator said O2 was the least complained about operator for the ninth quarter in a row. Virgin Mobile and Vodafone also received complaints below the industry average.
Orange was heavily criticised by consumers when it withdrew its free broadband proposition in October 2012. Contract customers who had signed up with the operator between 2006 and 2009 received the free service but now have to pay £14 per month. Orange said it would not charge customers for exiting their broadband contract early but this failed to stop consumers complaining. Ofcom received 0.21 complaints per 1,000 customers, compared to the 0.13 industry average.
Claudio Pollack, director of Ofcom's consumer group, said: 'It’s encouraging to see a continuing decline in the total volume of complaints, and we hope these figures will incentivise providers to further improve their performance. We’re committed to providing consumers with valuable information to help them choose a provider that best suits their needs.'
Speaking about its position as the least complained about operator, an O2 spokesman said: 'The data shows we’ve remained the best performer for two years. We plan to keep it that way by continuing to deliver the best possible experience for our customers.'
Author: Graeme Neill