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Mobile service operators fail to meet quality standards in Kenya

08 June 2015, 18:26 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - All mobile phone operators failed to meet the Quality of Service (QoS) targets set by the regulator, Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).

None of the then four operators; Safaricom, Airtel, Telkom and Essar met the service standards, according to the assessment of the performance of mobile networks in the country for the period 2013-2014.

" All of them however complied with QoS targets on Handover Success Rate, Call Drop Rate, Call Set Up Time and Signal Strength," the CA said in a report Monday. 

The performance on Speech Quality improved tremendously for three operators except Essar. There was degraded performance by all operators on three Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), namely, Call Set up Success Rate, Call Completion Rate and Call Block Rate. The assessment is conducted annually to ascertain compliance with the Kenya Information and Communications Act, 1998, the Regulations and license conditions in relation to Quality of Service (QoS).

The report provides the level of conformance of the licensees’ services to the set quality of service standards expressed in terms of a select set of parameters, also referred to as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). For any mobile operator to be deemed compliant with the QoS standards, they are required to meet a minimum threshold of at least 80% of the overall QoS KPIs against the targets. The assessment covered all the four mobile networks undertaken simultaneously based on Intra-network configurations.

The coverage involved collecting and sampling data that most represents the experience of the general public. Measurements in some regions had overlaps due to the manner in which the existing road networks traverse what were formerly local government boundaries. The report also provides an overall performance for the country as a basis of the rating of each operator. This is critical to guide the principal aim of bridging the digital divide across Kenyan communities and regions.

The beneficiaries of this approach include universal service access and universal access fund projects. The prevailing insecurity made it difficult to cover the North Eastern counties of Mandera and Wajir. Also affected were some parts of Marsabit, Samburu and Garissa counties.

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