Our broadband monitoring program will help provide consumers with accurate, independent and comparable information about broadband speeds and performance. When published, you will be able to use this information to shop around for the best deal, as well as to check that you're getting what you paid for.
Consumers spend over $4 billion per year on fixed-line broadband services, and they need access to accurate information to assist them in choosing plans.
The broadband monitoring program will involve testing around 4,000 households across Australia and around 2,000 volunteers in the first year to determine typical broadband speeds and performance at various times during the day.
To provide this information to consumers we are setting up a volunteer testing panel and will begin our first tests by the end of the year. We’ll begin publishing data in the first quarter of 2018.
Consumers will benefit by:
- making it easier to compare plans and shop around for the best deal
- being able to check if their broadband service is delivering on the value they signed up for
- encouraging retailers to compete on performance as well as price and data inclusions.
We need volunteers across many different retail service providers over a range of broadband technologies and on different retail speeds and plans. We’ll be testing NBN services, as well as some ADSL and next generation fibre services. At this stage, the program will not test mobile, satellite or fixed-wireless broadband services.
We reserve the right to close or extend this call for volunteers.
The ACCC will work with the testing provider, SamKnows, to test how popular broadband services perform at different times of the day. We will ensure we have volunteers in place to produce the most reliable performance information. If you’re selected, we will contact you directly.
Note: not everyone who expresses interest will take part in the testing, but we are looking for lots of volunteers so we encourage you to sign up.
If you’re selected to participate in the program or if we need more information from you, you’ll be contacted using the details you provide when you sign up.
We may also need to contact you earlier, or during the later stages of the program. Selected volunteers who agree to participate will be provided with a small ‘Whitebox’ device to plug in at home (similar to a home modem). The Whitebox will perform automated tests on volunteers’ home internet connection including at peak and off-peak usage times, and is similar to devices used in monitoring programs in the UK, US and Canada.
Volunteers will have access to information about their internet performance.
You won’t be paid to participate in the program, and it won’t cost anything to participate.
The Whitebox won’t record any personal information or browsing history, and won’t interfere with your service. A small amount of your broadband data will be used to conduct testing — the international experience tells us that this has little to no impact on testing volunteers.
SamKnows is an experienced internet testing provider, with a proven track record in testing broadband connections in international monitoring programs, which have enhanced consumer information, decision-making and competition in overseas markets.