Damning net report

Damning net report

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Stuart Graham and Matt Reynolds installed the City of Gosnells’ first NBN node in Langford last week. Photograph — Matt Devlin.
Armadale has been revealed as an area with one of the highest number of complaints about internet service in WA. Photograph - Matt Devlin.

A report has been released revealing Armadale as one of the top spots in Western Australia for complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman because of internet issues.

The Ombudsman’s 2017 Annual Report revealed 393 complaints were made about services in the Armadale area during the 2016-17 financial year, which was the second highest number in WA.

Armadale was beaten only by Mandurah with 469 complaints.

Cannington and Canning Vale were sixth and ninth respectively.

Almost 14,000 complaints were made to the Ombudsman from WA in 2016-17 a majority of which were about Internet issues.

The numbers represented a 49.1 per cent growth in complaints over the previous financial year.

Ombudsman Judi Jones said there had been a marked increase statewide in complaints about the National Broadband Network.

“This includes an increase in complaints about connection delays and reliability issues such as faults,” she said.

“The vast majority of complaints were resolved by the residential consumer or small business and their phone or internet provider working directly together.”

Member for Burt Matt Keogh said he was frustrated residents often had to call him for help with a connectivity problem.

“Perth’s south-eastern suburbs have received a raw deal,” he said.

“My office receives calls every day from people connecting to or getting slow download speeds on the NBN as well as complaints about mobile black spots.

“Customers shouldn’t have to resort to calling the Ombudsman over simple connection issues and they certainly shouldn’t have to seek intervention by their local MP.”

NBN Co has said it was taking complaints about its rollout seriously and chief executive Bill Morrow said while the figures looked bad only about one per cent of all homes had complained.

“No large scale construction project has ever been problem-free,” he said.

“It is an unfortunate reality of such a fast-paced infrastructure build.”

NBN claimed it was connecting about 40,000 homes to its service every week.

Mr Morrow said NBN Co had 30,000 employees and with a workforce that size some complications were to be expected but that his company had regular meetings with service providers and they had developed programs to improve the NBN user experience.