Mobile phone contracts are a dime a dozen these days – at very different prices. However, a new study shows that customers who pay more are not happier. On the contrary.

Whether as a complex package with a premium smartphone, additional services and countless extras from the mobile phone shop or as a takeaway at the discounter checkout: the range of mobile phone contracts today is almost limitless. But how satisfied are the customers with their tariffs? That’s what a new study by DISQ commissioned by ntv wanted to find out. The results are quite surprising.

Because contrary to what one might expect, it is not the customers with the premium offers who receive the best service and the best performance by their own standards. On the contrary: The premium providers such as Telekom and Vodafone consistently end up in the bottom third. The discounters, on the other hand, are at the forefront. And not just because customers appreciate their prices.

The clear winner is Alditalk. With 79.8 out of 100 points, the discounter came within a hair’s breadth of the “very good” mark. And not because it’s so cheap. Although customers are quite satisfied with the prices, Aldi only ranks seventh in this sub-rating. The discounter is the leader in two areas where you would not have expected it: No other provider in the test satisfied its customers so much with the service. And accordingly, nobody is recommended to friends and family that often.

The picture also continues with the competitors Lidl Connect (79.3 points), WinSIM (79.2 points) and Tchibo Mobil (79.1 points), which are just a little behind them: They can all do in the five categories surveyed – the product range, the pricing, the service, the frequency of annoyances and the recommendation rate – all-round convincing, always end up among the best. And accordingly deliver a close head-to-head race. None of the front runners can afford to drop out.

Premium does not mean satisfied

The situation is completely different for the network operators, whose assessment is considerably more mixed. With the O2 provider Telefónica, the customers are very satisfied with the prices and also appreciate the product offers. But because no other provider has so many annoyances, it is still only enough for an approval rating of 71.4 percent – and thus for 15th place out of 21 companies evaluated.

With the most expensive provider, Telekom, the pricing is a thorn in the side of customers: Team Magenta comes last here. Interesting: The service is also rated only mediocre. Here one would rather expect a strength of the premium provider. However, it is quite conceivable that the demands of customers are simply higher due to the high prices. When it comes to annoyances, however, Telekom also ranks among the worst providers. With a rating of 70.1 points, it also ranks 17th overall.

Vodafone does even worse. In terms of annoyances, the third network operator in the test came second to last, and you can never get higher than 15th place. With an overall satisfaction rating of just 68.7, the group is third from last.

Incidentally, Freenet and Mobilcom-Debitel bring up the rear: Both end up in the four worst-rated companies in the test in each individual category.

Exciting details

In the detailed questions, the study also shows other exciting aspects of mobile phone use. By far the most widespread amount of data volume is 3 to 5 gigabytes per month. Almost a third of users come up with this amount. Almost a quarter is below that, and a quarter also has 5 to 10 gigabytes. Only about 12 percent of German users are above that. By far the most popular network is that of Telefónica: 44.7 percent use the O2 network. This is followed by Telekom (26.6 percent) and Vodafone (22.6 percent).

Although only 39.8 percent of those surveyed used a prepaid tariff, the vast majority did without the previously greatest advantage of fixed-term contracts. Only 23.4 percent have their phone as part of the tariff package. More than three times as many bought the device individually.

The complete study can be found at DISQ.