Consumer mobile complaints fall by 21% in 2013-14

17 September 2014

Consumer complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) about mobile telecommunications services fell by 21 per cent in 2013-2014, according to official figures released today.

The TIO figures also show that complaints about mobile coverage fell by 54.6 per cent to 11,708 in 2013-14 from 25,789 in the previous year.

The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) Chief Executive Officer, Chris Althaus, welcomed the TIO annual report, which stated that complaints about mobile faults, including coverage, equipment faults, call dropouts and slow data speeds, almost halved from 46,851 to 24,469.

“It is great to see improved performance by our industry in the delivery of better coverage and fewer complaints about mobile faults,” Mr Althaus said.

“The industry has worked hard to lift its customer service performance as well as investing more than $10 billion on the latest-generation mobile technologies, network infrastructure and spectrum over the past two years in response to strong consumer demand and increasing customer expectations.”

Complaints about mobile roaming issues dropped by 35 per cent to 1253 in 2013-14 from 1926 in 2012-13.

In response to the reported increase of 12,583 complaints about excess data charges on mobile services, Mr Althaus said it was important that customers discuss their mobile data needs with their service providers, including how to monitor their data usage.

Service providers under the Telcommunications Consumer Protection (TCP) Code alert customers when they reach 50 per cent, 85 per cent and 100 per cent of their data usage limit.

Mr Althaus said: “It’s worth remembering that there is something like 32 million mobile subscriptions in Australia and despite this dwarfing the level of complaints, the industry will stay focused on further reducing TIO complaint levels in 2014-15.”

The TIO figures show that new mobile complaints per 1000 consumers were 3.6 in major cities or 0.36 per cent and 1.9 complaints per 1000 in regional areas or 0.19 per cent.

See AMTA’s Mobile Tips on how to avoid bill shock: www.mobiletips.org.au

For more information contact Randal Markey, AMTA, 0421 240 550