Virgin Media has been named the top rated broadband provider for 2016, scoring highest for reliability, speed satisfaction and fastest download speed, as measured by comparison site Broadband Genie's annual home broadband survey.
Plusnet, which took the crown last in 2015, was applauded for its value and high volume of recommendations, while Sky won in the customer care and technical support categories, and BT won an award for the highest rated home Wi-Fi router.
TalkTalk scored very low in the survey - a symptom of the significant reputational damage and loss of customers it suffered from the high-profile hacking of the company last year - with only 60 per cent of customers saying they would recommend TalkTalk to their friends and family. Its satisfaction scores for speed, customer care and tech support were drastically lower than other providers. It wasn't just reputational damage for TalkTalk either; the company recently reported the cyber attack racked up £60m in damages and the loss of over 101k customers.
For the first time, newly rebranded Fuel Broadband was voted best budget provider. Sky picked up an award for the best bundled provider. London-based 4G mobile broadband provider Relish was chosen for the innovation award, and popular global streaming service Netflix was selected as the best streaming TV service. Finally, long standing catch-up service BBC iPlayer was given the best catch-up service award. Full list of awards here.
Rob Hilborn, Head of Strategy for Broadband Genie, says: “This has been the closest year yet, but Virgin deservedly took the overall award with strong scores across all key categories. The good news for consumers is that Virgin has made the well overdue announcement that it will be expanding its service to nearly 17 million premises over the next few years, giving even more homes and businesses access to its superfast network.”
Matthew Evans, chief executive of the Broadband Stakeholder group, says: “This year’s result show how fierce the competition is in the broadband market at the moment. Clearly customers are looking for high quality of experience when using their connection, coupled with strong customer support for when things do go wrong.”