In light of the ASA’s consumer research findings and public consultation, CAP announced, on 23 November 2017, that the current, most commonly used approach to presenting speed claims in broadband ads is likely to mislead consumers. As a result, it is has published new guidance on the advertising of numerical speed claims for residential broadband services, which will take effect from 23 May 2018. Until then, this guidance will apply.
In practice, different customers of the same provider can achieve different broadband speeds as a result of a number of factors, and this has implications for how broadband speed claims may be communicated by advertisers. This Advertising Guidance primarily provides advice about making ‘maximum’ claims in the form of a numerical speed claim, for example “up to 10Mb broadband” but it also applies to other approaches used to indicate the maximum speed of a service, such as “superfast”. Maximum speed claims should be based on the actual experience of users.