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Broadband providers could soon be required to highlight both download and upload speeds in future advertisements.

According to, this is one of the options being considered by Ofcom as it seeks to revise its voluntary code of practice for broadband companies.

The watchdog has also proposed making broadband providers give consumers an estimate for the maximum speed at off-peak times (80th percentile speed).

Households could also be given details on the minimum speeds at peak times (Tenth percentile speed) and the normally available speed at the busiest periods (80th-20th percentile speeds).

Speaking to, an Ofcom spokesperson confirmed it has not yet finalised its plans and will consult on any proposals in the future.

"We’ve said that we aim to improve broadband speed information by revising our voluntary codes of practice," he commented.

"We are discussing with industry ways to improve speed estimates and ensure effective redress when speeds fall below a minimum."

The issue of communicating accurate broadband speed information to customers has already been placed under the spotlight by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

Broadband providers are currently allowed to advertise broadband speeds if they are available to ten per cent of their customers.

However, the ASA is concerned that this could potentially mislead people, with the majority of customers possibly not getting the speeds they expected.

The Committees of Advertising Practice is therefore seeking views on how broadband speed advertising can be improved and made more reflective of the service that consumers are likely to receive.

Among the options being considered is basing speed claims on a peak-time median download speed or using peak-time download speeds available to the 20th to 80th percentile of users.


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