Half of consumers aren’t satisfied with the speed of their home broadband

Speed is one of the most important factors for people when they are choosing a broadband plan, coming second only to price, so why are so many of us sticking with our providers if we’re not happy?

Maeve McLaughlin
by Maeve McLaughlin on 19th July, 2016

We’ve just published our latest consumer research on broadband speeds and customer satisfaction - or lack thereof - with the speeds they’re getting at home.

As it turns out, only just over half of broadband customers are satisfied with their broadband speeds, but our research shows that over three-quarters of us didn’t switch broadband provider last year - which means a huge proportion of us are sticking with speeds, and providers, we’re not happy with.

Speed is a big factor for people who are looking to switch broadband provider, coming second only to price in terms of importance. Despite this, only 54% of us have actually checked our speed at home, with most people who have never checked saying they simply assume they are getting the speed they pay for.

In fact, this may not be the case, as a third of people said they had checked their speed at home and found they were getting lower speeds than what they paid for, at least some of the time.

We’re seeing providers upping the ante when it comes to the speeds they’re offering all the time, with eir, Pure Telecom and Vodafone now offering ‘lightning speeds’ of up to 1,000Mbps in some areas of the country. This is up to 80 times faster than regular broadband speeds, and allows customers to download a movie in less than 10 seconds.

However, these lightning speeds can be costly, in some cases around €30 more per month than other deals, which may be a step too far in terms of cost for some consumers. In reality, reliable 100Mb fibre broadband is sufficient for the needs of most households - but the problem is not everyone is benefitting from speeds like this just yet.

It can be really frustrating if you’re trying to stream or download content and it takes much longer than it should because your broadband is sluggish. Hopefully the National Broadband Plan will address this for the majority of homes, but what can you do about it in the meantime?

Well, there are a number of factors that can affect your broadband speed, like:

  • the type of connection you have, for example fibre, ADSL, or wireless;
  • where you live;
  • the device you’re using;
  • whether you’re using Wi-Fi or plugging into the router; and
  • the time of day you’re using the internet (generally speeds are slower when more people are online).

​Obviously you can’t change where you live, but there are some things that you can take control of in order to make the most of your broadband speed.

Firstly, you should carry out a broadband speed test to see what speed you’re getting at home. If you regularly use Wi-Fi, and you’re not happy with the speed you’re achieving, you could try plugging directly into the router instead, but if this doesn’t sort out the problem, you should contact your provider to have a chat about it.

If the issue is not resolved after speaking with your provider, it might be worth shopping around for a deal that suits you better. Our broadband deal checker shows you all of the deals available in your area, along with the maximum speeds for each provider.

So if you’re one of the people who hates waiting for shows to buffer, or for movies to download, shop around to make sure you get the speeds you want - it’ll make your next Netflix marathon much more enjoyable.

Switch and save: Compare all broadband deals