Report: Smart pulls away from Globe in 4G availability, quality

A new report from telecom metrics firm Opensignal showed Smart Communications breaking away from rival Globe Telecom in 4G availability and overall quality.

The PLDT-owned operator increased its 4G availability ranking by 7.5 percentage points for a score of 81.8%, an increase over its score of 74.3% in the last Opensignal report.

Smart and Globe had been neck-in-neck in 4G availability with very little difference in their scores for the past year. Globe also increased its 4G availability score to 77.8% but a gap of four points now exists between the two operators.

Smart also performed better in video experience, leaping ahead of Globe to receive a score of 55 (on a scale of 0-100), which puts it in the “Fair” category. A Fair rating means that video experience is acceptable at lower resolutions.

“Smart’s score is a 15.6% increase over our last report when Smart achieved a rating of 47.6. While Globe is still far behind Smart with a score of 39.8, the operator should be commended for increasing its video experience score by 9.4 points. Globe, however, still falls into a lower category, which means its users on average find streamed video hard to watch,” Opensignal said.

Smart also edged its rival in gaming experience, scoring 36.9 on a scale of 0-100, just ahead of Globe’s score of 35.9.

“Users on both operators would benefit from improvements in their gaming experience to remove noticeable delays within games and to help players to feel like they always have control over the gameplay,” the report said.

Both Smart and Globe made improvements in download speed since the last edition of the report. However, Smart won this category with users experiencing an overall download speed of 10.6 Mbps — a 12.8% increase over the 9.4 Mbps speed reported last September. It was also 3-Mbps faster than Globe.

Smart and Globe also improved the network responsiveness experienced by their users and tied for the latency experience category, according to Opensignal.

“Globe reduced its latency score to 60.7ms down from 64.2ms in our last report. Smart’s score of 59.8ms is a reduction from the 61.9ms seen in September’s report,” it said.

Both Smart and Globe scored in the very poor category when it came to voice app experience, which measures the quality of user experience for over-the-top (OTT) voice apps such as WhatsApp, Skype, and Facebook Messenger.

“Smart was the winner of this category with a score of 64.8 on a scale of 0-100, while Globe was slightly behind with a score of 64.0. Both of these scores fall into the Very Poor category, which means that most users were dissatisfied and experienced significant call quality impairments such as distortion, clicking sounds or silence,” the report said.

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