Islamabad - Telecom companies’ revenue collection is going up but many users believe the services standard is actually coming down with every passing year.

According to Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) annual report 2015, data revenue of all cellular mobile operators (CMOs) has increased by more than three times, during last five years.

In February 2016, according to PTA, there were 29,323,215 broadband subscribers. In July 2015 the total subscribers were only 17,709,663. But despite massive growth in revenues and subscriptions, users complain that the data services have actually deteriorated.

It is impossible to open any page on my mobile on Friday, Saturday and Sundays, said Ikhlaq Ahmed. He said that after the introduction of 3G and 4G services usual data services has been declined. He said last year, service was better. Those using 3G and 4G services also complained of slow connection.

Many times my 4G connection take ages to download videos, so much so that sometimes simple web pages don’t open, said Zulfiqar Khan.

Khan told that he works for an oil company and travels a lot. He said as compared to the rest of the world, mobile services in Pakistan are worst.

Many complained of poor signals while on go and said that if signals disappear during traveling, there was no point of paying for mobile internet.

If you are traveling on national highways, the mobile signals will keep on coming and going, even in big cities, like Lahore Rawalpindi and Islamabad, signals disappear many times, government should ensure that the telecom companies not only pocket huge benefits but also spend on installing more towers (infrastructure), said shoib Afzaal, another user.

Some pointed out that many telecom operators were charging more than what they claim in their offers.

I bought a new connection (SIM) after seeing an offer, I uploaded Rs.150 balance to get 70 free off-net minutes, and 700 on-net minutes but after just making few calls I was told that my balance was insufficient, said Shuja, another user.

He said he was shocked as the amount was already deducted from his account and the offer was valid for seven days.

He said when he called the helpline he was told that he had to pay 12 paisa, every time he make any call. The helpline told him that Rs. 113 was actually credited to his account, after taxes. After reduction of Rs. 110 for the package, he had only three rupees balance.

He said if he dial 770 times, the total cost will exceed R. 210. If, he said, he makes calls for the duration of 30 seconds the total package cost will be around Rs.300.

It is simply cheating, if I add all the charges, this offer has cost me around Rs. 200, is there no body to check, he said.

When the said company was contacted it said that 12 paisa was connectivity charges and it was understood as every company was charging on post paid offers.

The officials of telecom industry admitted that services might have been compromised but said that it was sheer competition.

There is a cut throat competition in the telecom sector. Service rates have been slashed to lowest minimum, you can only expect against what you are paying, a top official said.

He said if someone wants better services, top notch services are available but the prices are high.

Some users share spending more on elite services but said they were also not up the mark.

PTA, when contacted said that they only take action on complaints.

If someone has any specific complain he/she can contact our consumer protection directorate, the staff will take appropriate action, PTA official said.