Have you ever tried speaking to technical support at your broadband supplier? One of our readers recently told us of his experience with Talk Talk, running up a £60 mobile phone bill just trying to speak to them. But then the problem is not unique to that company. The author of this article once found his will to live severely tested after giving up the best part of the day trying to get BT’s technical support to answer some fairly simple questions.

We know that Carphone is worried about poor service. Its boss Charles Dunstone has said so. Similar problems at Bulldog eventually led Cable and Wireless to decide to shut the operation down.

And yet issues with poor service can work to a supplier’s advantage. Try switching. By the time you have finished listening to automated voice systems, your ears will be ringing. It’s tempting to give up and stick with your existing supplier.

That’s got to help churn, and one of the reasons we say for a supplier, barriers to exit are fairly high in the industry.

But, to the consumer’s rescue comes Ofcom. It’s conducting an investigation into the whole practice at the moment, results out soon.

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© Investment & Business News 2013