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28 Sep 2021

Switching broadband provider is set to become even easier

Ofcom is introducing changes that will make it easier to switch - and take as little as a day
Couple on laptop

Switching broadband provider is set to become even easier now the telecoms regulator has announced plans to introduce a 'One Touch Switch' process in early 2023.

Ofcom says the change will mean all home broadband customers - including those with providers that don't use the Openreach network - will only have to contact one company to switch.

At the moment customers leaving or joining providers who manage their own network, such as Virgin Media or Hyperoptic, have to contact both their old and new providers. Previous research by Ofcom showed that four in ten people who decide against switching have been put off by the hassle of having to contact more than one provider.

Don't put up with a sub-par provider - browse the best broadband deals at Which? Switch to see what's on offer.

How will broadband switching change?

The new broadband switching process means only ever having to contact one provider. There are three steps:

  1. Contact the provider you want to switch to and share your details.
  2. Your old provider will then get in touch with important information about switching - this will include any charges that will be applied for early termination and whether any other services you have with the same provider will be affected.
  3. If you decide to go ahead, the new provider will then manage your switch.

Ofcom says the new process will not only make switching easier, it'll be faster too - taking just as little as one day.

The new rules also mean providers will have to compensate customer if something goes wrong and they are left without a service for more than one working day.

All providers must have the new One Touch Switch process in place by April 2023.

Rocio Concha, Which? Director of Policy and Advocacy, said:

'The coronavirus crisis has meant consumers are more reliant on a good broadband connection than they've ever been before - so it's positive to see the regulator removing barriers that are preventing people switching providers and getting a better deal.

'This new u201cone touch switchu201d process must now be implemented swiftly so that consumers can reap the benefits as soon as possible. Consumers also shouldn't delay looking for a new deal - anyone unhappy with their current provider could potentially save up to £143 a year and get improved service by switching.'

Fibre broadband can get you faster speeds, a more reliable connection, and even save you money. Read our guide on the benefits of fibre broadband for more.

Don't wait to switch provider

We support Ofcom's moves to make switching even easier - but don't hold off until 2023 if you're struggling with sluggish broadband, an unreliable connection or terrible customer service.

Our analysis of broadband deals compared with the typical amounts customers of the UK's major providers pay showed that the average customer could save as much as £143 a year by switching to a different provider.

Plus, when we surveyed over 7,000 members of the public about their experiences with broadband providers, the majority of those who has switched said they found it easy.

If you're switching between the many providers that use the Openreach network - such as BT, EE Broadband, Plusnet, Sky, TalkTalk and Vodafone - you already only have to contact one provider.

See how your provider fares in our guide to the best and worst broadband providers, and find out how easy it is to switch in our guide on how to switch broadband provider.

Switch your mobile phone provider and save even more

Getting the best deal on your broadband is just one way to shave money off those household bills. Switching mobile provider can be done with a text message - and you can keep your number.

See how your current provider fares in our roundup of the best and worst mobile providers. Read our guide on switching mobile provider to see how easy it is, and check the best Sim-free and contract mobile deals at Which? Switch.