Monday, 28 November 2011

Prohibition against selling new Automatically Renewable Contracts

In a statement published on 13th September 2011 Ofcom confirmed that telephone and broadband rollover contracts, which tie customers into repeated minimum term contract periods unless they opt out, will be banned from December this year.

These types of contract, which are also known as Automatically Renewable Contracts (ARCs), roll forward to a new minimum contract period unless the customer actively opts out of the renewal. These contracts also have penalties for leaving early. The ban on selling Automatically Renewable Contracts (ARCs) will apply to landline and broadband services sold to domestic (residential) and small business customers.

The ban against selling new Automatically Renewable Contracts (ARCs) to customers comes into effect on the 31 December 2011 and all existing ARCS have to be moved off the renewable contract type by the 31 December 2012.

This ban affects the sale of ARCs to residential and small business customers. The requirements go on to define a small business and domestic customers as:

“domestic and small business customer”, in relation to a public communications provider, means a customer of that provider who is neither —

(a) himself a communications provider; nor

(b )a person who is such a customer in respect of an undertaking carried on by him for which more than ten individuals work (whether as employees or volunteers or otherwise).

So it is only companies with less than 10 employees that this will effect at present

For more information on who this legislation applies to download the Ofcom Guidance here

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Moving house or moving offices - something to think about.

So you are looking at moving house. You have seen the ideal dream property, checked out the nearest schools for the kids making sure that they match your expectations and even taken into the account the drive in town.

The deal is done, solicitors engaged and the move in day arrives.

You have already swapped the telephone line over to you and the broadband is ready for activation as soon as you move in.

The move goes well and at the end of the day you collapse into a chair, a glass of wine to hand, and you think to yourself – I know I’ll update twitter and face book. Post a few pictures and catch up with everyone. I might even check some work emails as well.

The laptop connects to the router and then you wait and wait while the internet dribbles into the house.

Eventually you manage to do a speed test and you find the dream house you have purchased is either on an old exchange and you are right at the limit of the service.

Amusing NO! Particularly if you are going to be running your business from home or even need to work remotely at times. Suddenly the dream house turns sour.

Can this happen? – Yes. Does this happen? – Yes. Is there a solution? – Not very often.

The same happens with office relocations. You see the ideal building in a great location so you sign the lease and prepare to move in only to find that internet connectivity is poor and cannot be improved upon until the exchange is updated or another solution can be found.

So whenever you contemplate a move, be it residential or for business, check that the broadband services will meet your expectations and requirements. A quick check with Sam Knows will give you a good idea of what is available in terms of download and upload speeds.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

uSwitch report reveals that broadband users experience connection speeds falls by over a third during period of highest demand.

According to uSwitch studies, during the peak period between 7pm and 9pm average download speeds are 6.2Mbps. That’s some 35 per cent slower than the fastest average connection speed of 9.6Mbps available between the hours of 2am and 3am when demand is at its lowest.

Internet users in Evesham Worcestershire, had the worst speed results with a massive 69 per cent drop in speed with the average morning speeds of 15.5Mbps recording 4.9Mbps in the evening.

Another area that showed large drops in speed is Weston-Super-Mare where peak-time speeds deteriorate by 64 per cent to 3.4Mbps. The average off-peak speed is around 9.5Mbps.

uSwitch.com expert Ernest Doku, said: “This research may help to shed some light on why many bewildered consumers, who believe they’ve signed up to a certain broadband speed, never actually feel like their connection is fast enough.

With the way that people now use the internet to watch TV, download and stream music, there is a greater demand on the network that impacts on everyone using it. A recent Ofcom report revealed that the average UK user is downloading over 17Gbs of data per month.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

White Rose Networks rebrands to Merlin Telecommunications Ltd

From November 2011 White Rose Networks Ltd will become Merlin Telecommunications Ltd.

Following a Client Evaluation of our business earlier in 2011, you told us that we could improve in a number of areas, one being a clearer brand and also better communication of our products and services. We hope you will agree that this is an exciting and positive change.

Our business is growing and we are developing new services, but one of the most important things we’d like to re-iterate strongly is that our absolute dedication to customer service remains paramount. We’re working on systems to help us respond even faster and help your business perform better but access to the team and real people is what makes us different, and that will stay the same!

We encourage all feedback and listen closely to what you tell us so that we provide exactly what you need for your business.

Look out for more information on Merlin Telecommunications to follow soon.