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Ofcom releases its Annual Plan for the next year

Ofcom, the UK's communication regulator, has announced its priorities for the next year as part of its Annual Plan. We take a look at how Ofcom's work will affect you in 2014/15.

By on March 31, 2014 at 12:00 PM
Ofcom releases its Annual Plan for the next year

Who is Ofcom?

Ofcom is the company in charge of making sure that broadband, digital TV, mobile phone and even postal service customers are treated correctly and fairly. They ensure UK consumers are protected from scams, or any practices that could be deemed as underhanded, as well making sure our communications market remains as up to date and as competitive as possible.

Because of Ofcom's involvement in the UK's communications services, you can be sure that every broadband and mobile supplier will be giving you the best value for money. Simplifydigital is proud to be one of just six sites who have been completely Ofcom accredited for their price comparison service, meaning you can trust us to always deliver you the right information about the best broadband packages currently available.

What will Ofcom be doing this year?

Ofcom recently released its 2014/15 Annual Plan, which outlines what the communications regulator will be prioritising for the next year. Its plans have been broken up into separate categories, but each one will be given the same importance.

Ofcom's list of priorities

  • Promote effective competition and informed choice: Number one on the list for Ofcom is to ensure that the UK broadband market remains as competitive as possible, allowing customers to choose from a range of deals from various broadband suppliers. This also means improving the switching process, allowing customers to move from one supplier to another seamlessly without any hassle.
  • Secure optimal use of spectrum: Ofcom will continue to encourage the use of white space technology, which uses the gap between digital TV airwaves to transport other kinds of data, such as an internet connection for instance.  The regulator is also keen to ensure plenty of space is freed on the wireless spectrum, the radio waves that broadcast all our data, in preparation for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
  • Promote opportunities to participate: The regulator wants to ensure that getting in touch with anyone in the UK is as easy as possible, no matter where they live. To achieve this Ofcom will be promoting an increase in mobile coverage, and provide better information to customers about the kind of products which are available to them.
  • Protect consumers from harm: Currently Ofcom is working with mobile phone suppliers to make bills much clearer to read, especially when the customer has been charged for calling 0845 or 0844 numbers. They are also working to make 0800 numbers free to dial from mobile phones by summer 2015.
  • Maintain audience confidence in broadcast content: As part of this category, Ofcom is supporting work to help keep children safe online. The regulator will be looking into the parental controls provided by service provider, and working with the Government to ensure the controls are working effectively.
  • Contribute to and implement public policy defined by Parliament: There is a lot of interest from various European Governments in moving towards a single communications market across the entire continent. As plans for this move go ahead, Ofcom will be going over all of the proposals, to make sure each one supports the interest of UK consumers.


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