Richard Neudegg, head of regulation at uSwitch.com, comments: “Ofcom is finally moving the telecoms sector towards what consumers have come to expect in other areas such as energy and insurance, which constitutes overdue but welcome progress.
“uSwitch’s research found that the aggregate cost of out-of-contract charges to telecoms consumers is £41 a second. This is why time is of the essence – everyday spent waiting for these notifications to be rolled out, another £3.5 million is overspent on these services – meaning that more than £350 million has already been wasted since the consultation closed in February.
“It is worth pointing out that consumers should be wary of the ‘best tariffs’ outlined by their providers in these notifications as they will not necessarily be the cheapest or most suitable deals in the market. For an accurate picture of better offers available, as ever, consumers as advised to shop around.
“While it has been a long time coming, this is an important step by the regulator to address what has long been a clearly unacceptable gap in the rules, penalising consumers to the tune of millions.
“Customers should start seeing these notifications from February next year but consumers currently paying over the odds while sitting out of contract shouldn’t wait to act. There are savings to be had and in some cases you can even pay less for a quicker or better service.”
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Launched in September 2000, uSwitch is an online and telephone price comparison and switching service, helping consumers get a better deal on gas, electricity, broadband, TV services, mobiles and personal finance products including mortgages, credit cards, car and home insurance. Last year we saved UK consumers over £278 million on their energy bills alone.
Customers can sign up to an account that automatically monitors the energy market and notifies them when they can move to a cheaper tariff, while broadband customers can conduct a speed test to find out how fast their broadband is and identify the best deal for their postcode.
The multi award-winning 'Switching Made Simple' app allows customers to compare energy, broadband, credit card, mobile and SIM-only deals – and uSwitch also has a UK contact centre manned by energy and broadband experts. Customers can post their latest energy bills to FREEPOST USWITCH to receive a free call back and be guided through the comparison process, or they can email email@example.com with their postcode and usage details.
uSwitch is owned by ZPG, which operates some of the UK’s most trusted digital brands that help empower smarter property and household decisions including Zoopla, Money, PrimeLocation and SmartNewHomes.
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