Ofcom Bans Auto-Renewing Broadband Contracts in the UK

Gadgehit writes: "Broadcasting and telecommunications regulator, Ofcom (Office of Communication), has today confirmed a ban on auto-renewing contracts (ARCs) for broadband internet. Many internet service providers in the UK automatically renew a customer’s contract after their initial contract runs out, unless that customer opts out. This ban prevents customers from being forced to stay with an ISP without having to opt out before their initial contract runs out."

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Speed-Racer2682d ago

but what if you forget to renew? too much of a headache imo. if people have an issue with how much they pay or want to change their package etc... they would immediately act on it rather than waiting for the contract to expire.

gaffyh2681d ago

What happens with other providers is that the internet auto-renews, but not the contract. So you can cancel at any time, and the company will charge you for the month. These providers though, in the article, will auto-renew your contract for 12-months, meaning you will be stuck with them, or you cancel and have to pay the entire 12 months up front.

Speed-Racer2681d ago

it's like that with my DSL as well, I'd have to pay off for the year if I decide to cancel. However I guess I never really had any issues. Been with them for about 7 years now :p

gaffyh2681d ago

Well, if you haven't had many problems then I guess it wouldn't make a huge difference. But I know with BT, people get into a lot of issues with traffic-shaping. They're about the only ISP offering fibre-optic internet in the UK at an affordable price, and I was seriously thinking about switching from my standard ADSL ISP, but I don't want to get locked into a contract and find that my internet is even slower because of traffic shaping.

Virgin Media in the UK is also like this with traffic shaping, and it was incredibly annoying which is why I switched to O2. They had stupid limits like if you download 500MB in the day, they limit your bandwidth from 10Mb/s to 1.5Mb/s for 4-6 hours. If I'm paying for 10Mb/s, I want 10 Mbs at all times, not 1.5Mbs for half the day. And what was more dumb was that that 500MB was usually just HD videos or downloads from PSN.

/end rant.

tl;dr - I hate Virgin Media.