Internet service provider Dodo will repay some 16,000 customers after ACCC has discovered that some NBN broadband plans advertised as "perfect for streaming" have been hit by excessive rates for modest streaming usage.
- Dodo announced entry-level plans with speeds of up to 12 Mbps and only 10 GB of data included as "perfect for streaming"
- "The outrageous thing is that you are being charged extra for using the service as advertised," said Rod Sims, president of ACCC
- Dodo says the excess data costs are on average $ 23 per customer and affect less than 3% of customers
Dodo has undertaken a judicial commitment to repay up to $ 360,000 after admitting that claims made between the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2018 were likely to be false or misleading, in violation of consumer law.
The claims "perfect for streaming" have been made in advertising for entry-level broadband plans, including those with speeds of up to 12 megabits per second.
"We were worried that Dodo's customers on these plans could not reliably transmit high quality video, particularly when other family members were using the Internet at the same time," said Rod Sims.
"At 12 Mbps, Dodo customers could not broadcast ultra HD video."
Giant streaming Netflix recommends 5 mbps for HD quality streaming and 25 mbps for ultra HD, while the rival Stan service recommends between 4.5 and 7.5 mbps for HD and 15 mbps for ultra HD.
"A couple of movies a month"
Some plans also had a monthly tolerance of 10 gigabytes, which according to ACCC could only be used with a "modest" amount of streaming.
"This could take you a couple of movies a month, but later they charged you for excess," said Mr. Sims.
"The outrageous thing is that you are charged extra for the use of the service as advertised. We think it is simply unacceptable.
"People who are buying this plan would clearly like to watch more than a couple of movies a month, particularly if they are registered with Netflix and pay the fees they have to pay."
In a statement, Dodo stated that less than 3% of customers exceeded their plan, with an excess of data spending of around $ 23 per customer.
"Dodo will offer credits and reimbursements of excess usage fees and, where applicable, waive any exit fees to current customers," he said.
Antony de Jong, a director of Vocus, owner of the Dodo brand, apologized for the "mistake".
"Our team will get in touch with current and former customers," he said.
"We have ceased the new sales of this specific NBN plan and promotion some time ago."
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