SEPTEMBER 19, 2012

2nd Quarter Quality of Service (QoS) Benchmarking Conducted on Mobile Network Service Providers

During the 2nd Quarter of this year, the NTC conducted QoS Benchmarking tests on the networks of Globe Telecom and Smart Communication in all of the 16 cities and 1 municipality of the NCR.

The purpose of the tests is to measure their network performance based on existing NTC prescribed minimum service performance standards.

The tests were conducted using prepaid Globe and Smart SIM cards subscribing to regular services and not unlimited services. Sun SIMs, Talk and Text SIMs, Red Mobile SIMs and Touch Mobile SIMs were not used because these SIMs are using the networks of either Globe or Smart. The NTC monitoring team made sure that the mobile phone numbers used and the locations where the tests were conducted were not known to anyone except to the members of the monitoring team.

The monitoring teams conducted tests during the last week of April, May and June 2012.

The monitoring team initiated a total of 1,506 on-net calls per network. The initiated calls were simultaneously done for Globe and Smart. The monitoring team made the calls using the “drive test” method (i.e. inside a moving vehicle).

The results of the tests on the following parameters were as follows:

1. Blocked Calls or Grade of Service refers to the percentage of calls that were not given access by the network.

Based on the performance standards on Grade of Service, Smart Communication was measured at 9.95%, while Globe Telecom was at 4.45%. Though both of them did not pass the standard for Grade of Service which is at 4%, Globe Telecom‘s performance has an edge over Smart Communication on this area.

2. Dropped Call Rate refers to the percentage of on-going calls that were involuntarily terminated.

On Dropped Call Rate, both companies were within the 2% minimum standard. Smart Communications registered a 1.53% dropped call rate while Globe Telecom was at 1.66%. Smart Communication’s performance is better than Globe Telecom in this item.

3. Average Receive Signal Level refers to the signal strength that was being provided by the serving cellsite to the mobile handset of the subscriber while the conversation is on-going. This refers to the signal bar of a subscriber’s handset.

For Average Receive Signal Level, Smart Communication had an edge over Globe Telecom. Smart Communication registered -62.63 dBm and Globe Telecom registered -69.83 dBm. The minimum acceptable Average Receive Signal Level is -85 dBm.

4. Average Signal Quality is the quality of voice transmission while a subscriber is using his mobile phones. It should not be choppy or garbled.

For Average Signal Quality, Smart Communications had an edge over Globe Telecom. Smart registered 0.63 and Globe Telecom registered 0.72. The minimum acceptable range for this item is from 0 to 4, the closer to 0, the better. An Average Signal Quality of “0” indicates that there are no errors in transmission.

5. Call Set-Up Time refers to the time required for the network to activate the called party. In simple terms, this refers to the period required from the time a subscriber finished dialing to the time of the first ring.

Call set-up time for both telecom service providers were within the acceptable industry standard of below 14 seconds. Smart Communications registered at 11.74 seconds, establishing an edge over Globe Telecom by 0.16 seconds. Globe Telecom Call set-up time was at 11.90 seconds.

The NTC has already called the attention of both telcos regarding these results. The telcos informed the NTC that they are already addressing the matter. Globe Telecom said that they are implementing an expansion and upgrading of their network. Smart Communications stated that they are continuously rehabilitating their network. The NTC then mandated the telcos to inform the public of their ongoing efforts to improve their services. The NTC also required the telcos to give a detailed report of these improvements on a per area basis including date of completion per area.

The NTC will continuously monitor the service performance of the telcos to ensure the quality of service that telcos provide to the public.