You'll soon be able to switch broadband and mobile providers before your contract's up

Slow broadband or 4G speed? You can move to someone else with ease

Plagued by slow broadband at home and bad connectivity on your mobile? You don't have much luck, do you? But help may be at hand, courtesy of regulatory body Ofcom.

At present, you can only junk your broadband supplier in the first three months if its promised 20MB turns out to be more like dial-up circa 2002. However, new Ofcom boss Sharon White is planning to expand that to at any point in your contract, saving you anything up to 15 months of slow downloads, Netflix buffering and family squabbles over whose turn it is to access the internet.

With competition heating up in the home broadband market, the moves will enable you to move to the welcoming arms of a new and hopefully better supplier with much less hassle. The new supplier will now also be able to demand the necessary tech info to set up your account from your current supplier on your behalf.

Even more intriguingly, Ofcom boss White, who was appointed in December 2014, also plans to extend this to mobile contracts, though it's not clear if this is in relation to signal quality, 3G/4G connectivity or both.

Mobile companies have always insisted that allowing people to jump from their mobile contracts before they ended would be too expensive and technically difficult, so we'll have to wait and see if Ofcom is really ready to push this through this time. It also raises questions about contracts that include a handset - presumably you'd have to pay for the phone in full if you depart early.

Ms White will tell Which? magazine's conference, "This will make a real difference for consumers and will encourage more people to take full advantage of competition in the sector… Access to a reliable internet connection and mobile phone is essential to the functioning of the economy, to the way people work and live their lives.”

Clearly, she gets it.

Source: The Telegraph