Which? executive director, Richard Lloyd, said:
“It’s good to see Ofcom taking long awaited steps to make switching mobile companies easier. We want the new provider to be responsible for the process so it is simpler for consumers. Phone companies should also alert customers when their contracts are about to end and unlock handsets for free to promote switching and competition.”
Notes to editors
- As part of our Unlock Better Mobile Deals campaign, we called for Ofcom to introduce a system where the provider gaining the new business is responsible for the switch to make the process easier for consumers.
- Our research shows that mobile phone companies tend to charge people to unlock their phone and will often only do it when asked, which can act as a barrier to switching. Two thirds (66%) think it’s unfair that phones are locked to the provider’s network and three-quarters (77%) say it’s frustrating that phones need to be unlocked to use them on a different network. Eight in 10 (82%) think providers should unlock a phone for free when the contract comes to an end.
Methodology: Populus, on behalf of Which?, interviewed 2,111 UK adults, of whom 2,014 have a personal mobile phone and 1,184 have a contract, online between 16th and 18th May 2014. Data was weighted to be representative of the UK adult population. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.