The first quarter mobile cellular Quality of Service (QoS) Report, published by the National Communications Authority (NCA) indicate that market leader, MTN Ghana topped all the other players on all the parameters.
The measurements were taken in seven strategically selected regions, and the key indicators were four; they are as follow:
Call Setup Time (CST), measured as the time it takes to setup a voice call, i.e. how long it take for the call to hear the caller ring back tone (CRBT) after initiating a call. It is measured in seconds, and the pass mark is 95 per cent of call must take less than 10 seconds for the caller to hear the CRBT.
Voice Quality or Mean Opinion Score (MOS), which is a measure of what customers say about the audio quality of the conversation on a call. The MOS scale ranges from 1
to 5, with 1 being poor and 5 being excellent audio quality. Threshold for
compliance (pass mark) is an average of all Voice Quality (MOS) measurements being
greater than 3.5.
Data Throughput (Speed), which measures how fast data is transferred from a file transfer protocol (ftp) server to a mobile device. It is measured in kilobits per second (kbps) and the threshold for compliance is over 90% of all Data Throughput measurements being greater than or equal to 256kbps.
Finally, the 3G Coverage is an assessment of whether a telco has 3G presence in a district
capital or not. This is done by measuring the downlink signal level, Received
Signal Code Power (RSCP). Unit of measurement is the decibel-milliwatts
(dBm) and the threshold for compliance is an average of all measured RSCP levels
being greater than or equal to 05dBm.
On the basis of the foregoing, the score sheets published by NCA indicates MTN pass on all four indicators in all seven regions but failed in only one indicator – Voice Quality – in just one region, the newly created North East Region. The districts capitals, where MTN recorded failures in voice quality were Bunkpurugu and Yonyoo.
This clearly indicates why the market leader remain the service provider of choice for many Ghanaians and visitors to Ghana, reflected in its continuous growth in subscriptions and market share in an almost saturated market.
Second largest operators, Vodafone also put up an impressive showing on QoS, but recorded some ten failures across all four indicators.
The breakdown is as follows: two 3G coverage failures in the Greater-Accra Region, and one in the North-East Region; two Voice Quality failures in the Greater-Accra; three Call Setup Time (CST) failures Greater-Accra, two each in the Eastern and Ashanti regions, and one in the North East Region.
Third place AirtelTigo recorded passes in a greater majority of town in six of the seven regions, but recorded a total failure in CST in ten out of twelve towns in the Greater-Accra Region. It also failed on CST in one town, Nkawie, in the Ashanti Region.
AirtelTigo also recorded poor voice quality in Tepa in the Ashanti Region, while has no coverage in Yonyoo (North East), and Daboya (Savannah), so the indicators could not be measure in those towns.
Glo seem to have cutback very largely on its coverage, as it recorded “No Coverage” in as many as 81 districts across all four indicators and in all seven regions. That is an automatic failure in all of those districts.
Meanwhile, for the districts they had coverage, they recorded an additional 39 failures in aggregate.
A couple of years back, Glo Ghana announced a cutback on coverage and stated they are concentrating on strategically deploying infrastructure to man a triangular coverage structure, from where customers across the country will be provided services, depending on whether they are within the range of the triangle.
Glo customers continue to praise the telco for offering one of the best data experiences in the country, on the back of their Glo One undersea cable, but the cutback on coverage means, not many Ghanaians have access to it, hence their paltry showing on the subscription league table.
Meanwhile, the NCA did not announce any sanctions to any of the telcos for QoS breaches.