Internet, phone & TV

Vodafone to compensate customers over 'direct carrier billing' charges

Vodafone has admitted to making false or misleading representations about its third-party Direct Carrier Billing (DCB) service and will contact and refund impacted consumers, following an ACCC investigation.

The investigation was carried out by the ACCC under a delegation of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)’s powers.

Vodafone admitted that it likely breached the ASIC Act from at least 2015, by charging consumers for content they had not agreed to buy or had purchased unknowingly.

Samsung in court for misleading phone water resistance advertisements

The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Samsung Electronics Australia Pty Ltd (Samsung) alleging it made false, misleading and deceptive representations in advertising the water resistance of various ‘Galaxy’ branded mobile phones.

Since around February 2016, Samsung has widely advertised on social media, online, TV, billboards, brochures and other media that the Galaxy phones are water resistant and depicted them being used in, or exposed to, oceans and swimming pools.

Regulation of wholesale mobile voice terminating services to continue

Australia’s domestic Mobile Terminating Access Service (MTAS) for mobile voice services will be regulated by the ACCC for a further five years, but regulation of the MTAS for SMS services will not continue.

The MTAS is an essential wholesale service that allows consumers on different mobile networks to make calls or send SMS to each other. It requires mobile network operators to connect or ‘terminate’ calls or SMS between their different networks.

The current regulation, or declaration, of voice and SMS MTAS expires on 30 June, 2019.

Optus back in court over NBN disconnection claims

The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Optus Internet Pty Limited and Optus Mobile Pty Limited (Optus), alleging Optus misled consumers about the need to move to the NBN or risk being disconnected.

On 24 May 2018, Optus sent an email offering its NBN broadband services to 138,988 of its mobile customers, and advising them that their broadband service would be ‘disconnected very soon’ and encouraging them to ‘make the switch, before it's too late.’

New guide for fixed wireless broadband customers

The ACCC has today published advice for NBN fixed wireless customers experiencing broadband speed problems, and has updated its guidance for retailers about how to advertise broadband speed claims.

Customers on fixed wireless networks, many living in regional and rural areas, are still facing broadband congestion during the busy evening period, and many fixed wireless broadband customers are not getting speeds anywhere near the maximum advertised in their plan.

NBN consumers continue shift to higher speed plans

More than 5.2 million Australian households are now connected to the NBN, with almost 60 per cent subscribed to higher speed plans, according to the ACCC’s latest quarterly Wholesale Market Indicators Report, released today.

The report shows that NBN residential broadband connections across Australia rose by 8.5 per cent in the March quarter, up from 4.8 million at the end of the previous three months.

New report tracks internet activity on mobile and fixed lines

Mobile handsets continue to be the most common way consumers are accessing the internet while the largest volume of data is downloaded over fixed lines, as shown in a new ACCC data report on internet activity.

The report, for the period ending 31 December 2018, also provides information on the number of retail services in operation (SIOs) by connection type and download speeds as well as the volume of data downloaded within Australia.