Entanet calls on Which? to ‘get real’ over broadband speed advertising

November 19, 2014

Wholesaler argues that trying to impose stricter rules on how broadband services are advertised will only favour larger ISPs and lead to less choice for consumers

Telford, 18 November 2014 – Wholesale connectivity provider Entanet has called on Which? to ‘get real’ over the issue of broadband speed advertising in the latest posting on its opinion blog site at www.enta.net/opinion.

Earlier this week Which? called for more stringent guarantees on the advertising of broadband speeds and how quickly issues are fixed. In response, Entanet Product Manager Paul Heritage-Redpath points out that, whilst its intentions may be worthy, Which? has once again demonstrated its failure to understand the complexity of this issue and the way in which the multi-tier structure of the broadband delivery market works.

On the subject of fault resolution, he points out that most issues originate on BT’s network, which is managed and maintained by Openreach and are beyond the control of ISPs who have (with some specific exceptions) no direct access to the network and can do little to speed up fault resolutions.

Heritage-Redpath also notes that it is extremely difficult for any ISP to ‘guarantee’ broadband speeds, due to a multiplicity of factors, and that the new rules Which? is calling for that would require speeds to be based on at least 51 percent of the ISPs customer base would put smaller ISPs at a further disadvantage. That would ultimately result in consumers having less choice – and may even lead to some ISPs refusing to supply customers in areas where speeds will always be lower.

In the article he states: “We agree that all ISP websites should have accurate and justified headline speed claims but toughening advertising guidelines and forcing ISPs to provide inaccurate guarantees is not the best approach. If anything, such actions would lead to ISPs being more ‘choosey’ about the customers they take on (avoiding lower speed customers as they may affect their statistics) and could cause price hikes to cover potential ‘guarantee compensations’.”

A better approach, he argues, would be to ensure customers are more aware and informed of the variations that can occur in broadband services, all of which are contended (or shared) and can therefore never provide guaranteed throughput.

“Surely it would be more beneficial to educate customers to the fact that it is just an ‘estimate’ and that a guarantee would not be accurate and is therefore not provided. If guaranteed speed is critical to a customer then perhaps they need to consider other types of connectivity such as Ethernet – although these are more expensive and therefore usually only used by business customers.”

The complete post can be read at: www.enta.net/opinion/2014/11/18/broadband-speed-guarantees-which-real

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About Entanet
Entanet is a leading wholesale voice and data communications provider and operates via a network of wholesale and resale channel partners. It was founded in 1996 by Taiwanese entrepreneur Jason Tsai and employs over 80 staff at its offices in Telford, Shropshire.

In February 2014, mid-market equity investor Mobeus Equity Partners made an initial £6 million investment to support a £14 million management buyout. Jason Tsai remains a significant shareholder.

Entanet offers an extensive portfolio of connectivity services, including wholesale and packaged broadband, leased lines, EFM, IP VPNs, hosting and co-location, VoIP and traditional telecoms. The company operates its own fully-resilient nationwide next generation network which enables it and its partners to provide up to 10Gbps capacity to customers right across the UK. In addition, it has further connectivity into Amsterdam and Frankfurt and over 900 peering relationships across Europe.

The quality of Entanet’s services and its commitment to partners has been widely recognised. The company was recently named Best Channel ISP in the 2013 Comms National Awards and as the winner in the 2013 ISPA Awards for Best Business Fixed Broadband. In the Comms National Awards 2012 it was awarded Best Channel Wholesale Service Provider. It also received the ISPA award for Best Internet Telephony in 2011 and was short-listed in the Specialist Services Vendor of the Year category in the CRN Channel Awards – an accolade it has won twice in previous years. The company has also been listed on a number of occasions in the Sunday Times Tech Track 100, Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA and other listings of fast-growing, privately-held UK companies.

For more information contact:
Darren Farnden, Head of Marketing
Entanet International Ltd
Tel: 0333 101 000