The ACMA has announced a suite of new telco rules to improve the customer experience when migrating to, and using, the National Broadband Network (the new network). These rules will:
specify the minimum information that telcos must provide to consumers about their services before they sign up for a service
specify minimum standards for telcos’ complaints-handling processes and a requirement for telcos to report their complaint numbers to the ACMA so that changes can be monitored
require telcos to ‘line test’ new services on the new network to ensure lines are working and faults are identified early
enable consumers to be reconnected to legacy network services, if that fallback is needed.
We will also undertake further consumer research to monitor the consumer experience over the coming years, as well as a study into the quality of modems—including those issued by different retail providers—to determine whether intervention is needed.
Find out more about the new rules.
Industry information-gathering exercise
In August 2017, we announced an increased focus on the problems some consumers face when migrating to and using the new network. This program of work began with a detailed information-gathering exercise, to enable us to achieve a better understanding of the type, incidence and causes of these problems.
We used our statutory powers to obtain information from industry participants involved in providing services using the new network.
A public report of the ACMA’s findings has been published.
Most of the information obtained by the ACMA from the 21 companies was commercially confidential. We used this information to assess the need for regulatory or industry interventions, and to provide advice to government. However, it is not permissible for us to disclose such information where it is attributable to individual companies, without the permission of that company.
The ACMA has also commissioned research to examine the current Australian consumer experience before, during and after migration to the new network, across the range of technologies that are being connected to households and businesses in the 12 months prior to the research fieldwork. That research will update and build on our 2016 research into the experience of Australian residents and small to medium businesses migrating to the NBN.
It is anticipated that this research will be publicly released in the first half of 2018.