2011: MCA Consumer Perceptions Survey - Fixed Broadband

The MCA has today published the results of a survey it carried out between July and September, in order to gauge consumer perceptions and satisfaction levels with regard to broadband internet services. This is the first in a series of surveys, which will also cover mobile and fixed telephony, as well as broadcasting services.

Results show that 68% of Maltese households have internet access. Out of the remaining 32%, only 8% have indicated that they are willing to get such a connection in the next year. The main reasons mentioned for not getting Internet access were that no one needs Internet or that they do not have a computer at home.

In terms of internet quality of service satisfaction, more than 82% of households with internet access are satisfied or highly satisfied with the level of service, of which,57% are subscribed to an ADSL connection, 36% are cable subscribers and the remaining 7% are subscribed to other internet technologies such as Wimax.

Around 66% of households with internet access today claim that they cannot live without it. Only 16% of households with internet access think they do not need such services, possibly reflecting the respondent’s view rather than that of the general household.

Interestingly, more than 75% of households with internet access do not know what internet connection speed they have. Despite this, 85% of households still claim that their current internet speed is adequate for their needs. The results also show that 33% of households do not know the length of their service contract period.

Only 23% of all households with internet access think that switching between internet services can be difficult, mainly due to modem and wiring complications. Other commonly suggested reasons for not switching included the inclusion of broadband services as part of a bundle and the lack of customer care in such instances. Over the last two years, 8.2% of all households switched their cable connection to an ADSL connection, whilst 3.5% of households changed from an ADSL connection predominantly to cable internet and a fraction thereof to Wimax.

Price remains the most determining factor when choosing between Internet Service Providers (ISPs) [51% of households with Internet access]. 54% of all households with internet at home would in fact change their internet connection if the subscription charges were to increase by 10% on a monthly basis. Service reliability and connection service speed come second and third respectively to price levels.

‘The results of such surveys are indispensable to us as an Authority as they shed light on what the consumers actually feel about the services offered in the sectors we regulate,’ said Ing. Philip Micallef, Executive Chairman of the MCA. ‘Such results are equally, if not more essential for the service providers to better understand the needs and expectations of their customers and potentially cater their services accordingly, to the ultimate benefit of the consumer,’ he continued.

In 25% of those households with internet access, only one family member uses the Internet. 31% of households have up to two family members using the Internet, 22% have three family members, 15% have four family members while 7% of households have more than 5 family members using the Internet at home.

‘This is encouraging for the Authority, especially given the numerous ICT related initiatives launched in the past year that were aimed at introducing individuals to the benefits of ICT in every-day life. Having said this, there is more that we can do on this front and we shall persist with our efforts in the coming years,’ commented Ing. Micallef.

View Survey Results