A fresh set of rankings from the American Consumer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) reveals that few consumers are happy with the way their ISPs conduct business, preferring them only over petrol stations in a list of 43 major industries.
The rankings come from the ACSI's most recent telecommunications study, which the organisation publishes annually.
The study covers subscription TV services, video streaming services, and ISPs of both the fibre and non-fibre variety. Using interviews with 22,061 American consumers conducted between April 2022 and March 2023, this year's telecommunications study investigates just how happy people are with their ISPs, and then pits that data against that of several other industries.
This year, ISPs ranked lower than the endlessly frustrating automobile, banking, and health insurance industries, as well as 39 others that people tend to have an easier time with, such as breweries and athletic shoes.
On a satisfaction scale of 1 to 100, ISPs earned a lacklustre 68, which consists of fibre’s 75-point and non- fiber’s 66-point satisfaction scores combined. The ACSI used customers' input on several experiential data points, from choosing a plan to using their home Wi-Fi networks, to calculate both scores and combine them based on usage.
Fibre customers found their internet relatively reliable and their bills easy to understand, earning an 80 in both categories. Non-fibre customers weren't as impressed at 72 and 75, respectively. Unsurprisingly, both fibre and non-fibre customers enjoyed reaching out to their providers' customer service teams the least out of 14 total data points.
As much as Americans generally dislike the way ISPs manage hardware, pricing, customer service, outages, and more, they dislike petrol stations even more, giving the category a measly score of 65. The ACSI doesn't share the respondents' reasoning (it's a telecommunications study).