ACM is calling on telecom operators to increase comparability of consumer information about mobile plans
Consumers who wish to take out new mobile plans sometimes have a hard time comparing information from different providers. That is one of the conclusions of the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) in a study among consumers into their behavior on the Dutch telecom market.
The study reveals that consumers who are thinking about switching providers predominantly look for information on the other provider’s website. Most consumers find the information about prices and conditions of mobile plans easy-to-understand (57%). Although easy-to-understand, the information is difficult to compare between providers, according to consumers. A staggering 49% believe the information cannot be compared at all. Edwin van Houten, Director of ACM’s Consumer Department, adds: ‘ We think it’s important that people are able to make informed choices, and therefore ask providers to pay extra attention to the comparability of information.’
If providers present information about the conditions of mobile plans in such a way that consumers are able to compare them properly, it enables consumers to make an informed choice about the plans that best fit their needs. ACM believes it is important that consumers are properly informed. Only then will they be able to make well-informed decisions about the products or services that they purchase online, and be able to maintain confidence in the digital economy.
What information do consumers look for?
In the orientation phase, consumers primarily look for information that will help them make the right choice when taking out a mobile plan. This mostly concerns information about the fixed costs per month (68%), the contract’s term (47%), the quality or reliability of the network (45%), the possibility of transferring their number and how that process works (42%), the ability to monitor their own data and minute usage (41%), and the network’s speed (31%). Compared with last year, slightly more consumers were able to find this information (2020: 47% vs. 2019: 43%).
Each year, ACM has a study carried out among consumers into their behavior on the telecom market. All of the study’s results can be found in this report (in Dutch).
17-09-2020 2020 Consumer study into telecom market (in Dutch)