CRANE ON THE CASE: TalkTalk sold me an internet phone line without my knowledge… and it doesn’t work 

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  • The customer was sold an upgrade because she thought she would get faster broadband
  • But she says TalkTalk didn’t tell her that her phone line would also be changed.
  • It was switched from copper wire to internet phone.
  • It’s been down for months, but she’s still paying for it.
  • Did the company offend you? Contact us: [email protected]

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I’m beside myself with frustration at TalkTalk. I got my phone and internet from the firm for years and in early 2022 they called to sell me an upgrade.

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He offered me a phone and a faster broadband network, as well as a free Eero router, a device that should make the Wi-Fi connection faster and stronger. The seller said the first six months would be free and after that I would be charged £29.99 per month. It was only £2 more than I was paying so I accepted.

But after six months my monthly bill was £45. It turned out that the new package was for a phone with an Internet connection, not a traditional wired landline, which I was not told, and because I was still using my old landline, I was being charged for it too.

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Phone problems: The reader was connected to the Internet phone, but it stopped working.

After that, my landline phone began to crack during calls and eventually stopped working. I have been without a phone since July.

When a BT engineer was sent they said that the problem was that the phone line was still going through the copper wire and not the internet connection as it was supposed to, and that I needed a special component to make it work.

At first, TalkTalk insisted that it did indeed work over the Internet, but after two months and many requests, it eventually sent me the component I needed. After that, it took TalkTalk weeks to send someone to install it, and when he showed up, he said that the adapter still wouldn’t solve the problem.

I still pay £45 a month for a phone that doesn’t work and had to pay £50 to call an engineer who couldn’t fix the problem. TalkTalk gave me a loan of £30, which I find completely inadequate. SS, email.

Helen Crane of This is Money replies: You might not be surprised to learn that TalkTalk’s motives for offering you a tempting new deal weren’t entirely altruistic.

As fewer people use landlines, the copper cables they carry have become expensive for telcos to maintain, so they are trying to convince their customers to switch to connections that run over the Internet.


Our weekly column explores how Helen Crane, This is Money consumer products expert, solves readers’ problems and sheds light on companies doing both good and bad.

Do you want them to investigate the issue, or do you want to praise the firm for going the extra mile? Contact:

[email protected]

But there is a big problem, which is that telephone connections over the Internet are not that good. They won’t work if WiFi goes down or the power goes out.

This led to some dangerous situations, our sister publication Money Mail reported, such as when a pensioner’s rural home burned to the ground because the internet was down and he couldn’t call for help.

You have a cell phone, so you can still stay connected during those constant phone problems. But that’s not the point: you’ve been sold a product you don’t need, and you’re paying TalkTalk for a landline that doesn’t work.

Because you weren’t told from the start that it was an internet phone, you didn’t fully understand how it worked. This was exacerbated by the fact that the customer service people you spoke to didn’t seem to understand how it worked either.

When you tried to get help, the firm’s approach was all talk, no action.

TalkTalk problem: SS says a telco sold her an internet phone line she didn't need and then couldn't fix it for months when it wasn't working.

TalkTalk problem: SS says a telco sold her an internet phone line she didn’t need and then couldn’t fix it for months when it wasn’t working.

You’ve been bounced from pole to post by phone, tormented by canceled and rescheduled engineer visits, and faced with a battle to get a piece of technology that supposedly solves a problem – only for an engineer who showed up (worth £50) to tell you you weren’t should have been worried.

It was at this time that you called for my help. After I contacted, TalkTalk sent an engineer within a few days to fix the problem, connect the phone line to the Internet, and let you make calls.

You have also been awarded a total settlement of £661, a huge improvement over the measly £30 you were previously offered.

You still have the internet phone you didn’t ask for, but now it works.

Of course, you can switch at the end of the contract if there are any issues – or if you decide to vote with your feet due to TalkTalk’s substandard service.


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