Home News The ECOI commissions Rohde & Schwarz to carry out a comparative evaluation of the quality of...

ECOI commissions Rohde & Schwarz to benchmark the quality of Icelandic mobile networks based on the ETSI methodology

quality of mobile networks

The Electronic Communications Office of Iceland (ECOI) has selected Rohde & Schwarz mobile network Test and Measurement solutions to assess and compare the performance, coverage and capacity of the three Icelandic operators. Ultimately, the goal of the campaign is to improve the quality of service (QoS) and quality of experience (QoE) of end users in Iceland, taking into account the difficult geographical and climatic conditions of the island. ECOI commissioned Rohde & Schwarz Network Analysis Services to deploy a benchmarking campaign based on a transparent, internationally standardized process that follows the recommendations of the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).

The national regulatory authority Fjarskiptastofa (FST), known internationally as the Electronic Communications Office of Iceland (ECOI), commissioned Rohde & Schwarz with a large-scale benchmarking campaign to assess the quality of mobile networks in Iceland. Mobile network measurement experts at Rohde & Schwarz planned and carried out the benchmarking campaign as a service for the ECOI. The collected data was processed using the Network Performance Score (NPS) 2.0. NPS is a completely transparent measurement methodology compliant with ETSI TR 103 559 that compares normalized KPIs for mobile networks obtained through drive tests and walk tests.

The ECOI is one of the first European regulatory authorities to rely on the NPS to carry out such a large-scale network benchmarking campaign. The NPS is based on a methodology described by the European standards organization ETSI in its technical report ETSI TR 103 559 and provides an industry-proven standard for benchmarking the quality of service and user experience of mobile networks at scale. international.

The campaign was carried out for five weeks in September and October 2023. About 9000 km were covered through large cities such as Reykjavík, small towns and remote roads throughout the island. The quality of the network within the shopping centers was also assessed, covering approximately 90% of the Icelandic population. The campaign included more than 17 calls and the evaluation of more than 000 data tests, including application-level tests for 160-second voice calls, eGaming applications, online meetings and video chats to evaluate the experience typical of current subscribers. NPS version 000 applies more demanding thresholds and complex weighting, especially in the case of highly advanced networks with wide availability for 90G, such as Iceland.

Benchmark measurements confirmed that the three Icelandic mobile networks, Síminn, Nova and Vodafone, scored more than 700 points (out of 1000), putting them at the same level as other European mobile networks. All three networks have very good 5G coverage in cities and smaller towns, and excellent 4G coverage throughout the country. Both voice and data services are reliable, although they still have room for improvement. Thanks to the NPS method applied in real drive tests, quality of experience problems were detected, especially on national roads, that would have gone unnoticed with other test methods.

The objective of the ECOI is to promote the development of Icelandic telecommunications networks so that all residents and visitors can enjoy services anywhere on this sparsely populated island. The benchmarking is also intended to encourage healthy competition between the three Icelandic network operators and stimulate investments in infrastructure, which ultimately benefits end users and businesses. Þorleifur Jónasson, Director of the Infrastructure Division at ECOI, says: “ECOI is convinced that only a methodology deeply rooted in internationally recognized standards allows for a fair and impartial assessment of the quality of mobile networks. "That is why we have opted for Rohde & Schwarz and its mobile network quality benchmarking services, since its network performance assessment methodology defined by the ETSI convinced us from the first moment."

Maja Mitic, Director of Network Analysis Services at Mobile Network Testing at Rohde & Schwarz, says: “The vast open landscapes and harsh climatic conditions that characterize Iceland make it difficult for operators to provide the best network coverage. possible network, especially in the case of 5G. The ECOI is one of the first European regulatory authorities to entrust Rohde & Schwarz with a large-scale, transparent and impartial benchmarking campaign to evaluate the quality of a country's networks and user experience. “It is a crucial step to ensure greater investment, innovation and consumer protection through greater competition between Icelandic network operators.”