By Alois Vinga
TELECOMMUNICATIONS giant, Econet Wireless has relatively lower ratings in both household and corporate satisfaction when compared to all eight internet operators in the country.
This is revealed in a recent consumer satisfaction report published by the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz).
Measured against five service expectations for household consumers, under the first category of download speed, upload speed, data packet losses, billing accuracy and speed of service, Econet scored between 4.0 and 5.0 on a scale of 7.
In comparison, NetOne scored between 5.3 and 5.7, Telecel scored 5.3 and 5.6, TelOne between 5.2 and 5.6, ZOL 6.0 and 6.2 while Powertel and Africom scored points higher than 5.
According to the survey, the internet and data usage household consumer satisfaction index stood at 63% in 2018 down from 74% recorded in 2015.
“Although internet and data services usage has grown significantly, there is need for operators to improve network speeds and accessibility. There is also need for special attention to household consumers since their satisfaction levels have declined by 10 points,” the report said.
According to the report, education awareness around internet usage especially among household consumers is also a priority since some of the issues influencing satisfaction were due to lack of knowledge on how the internet works was recommended.
“Providers should also monitor and address issues of internet speeds and incidences of data packet loss. (They should) also put in place service automation and self-help mechanisms to improve service delivery,” the report said.
Household consumers indicated that in terms of ease of access to social media, Whatsapp was rated the highest followed by Facebook and the least being Twitter.
Potraz said consumers also complained about the manner in which service providers handled their calls highlighting that service providers should invest more in their call centres. The regulatory authority added that consumers are being forced to visit the call service centres for most issues.
Among the household respondents, 56% expressed challenges in download speeds while 37% raised concerns over data packet losses.
Some 25% of respondents also raised issues related to billing accuracy according to the report.
The usage of the internet in households has increased by 5% over the last four years in a development indicating that Zimbabweans are quickly embracing technology.