Malaysia has fastest mobile network in South East Asia: Tutela

A report comparing Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Malaysia has found that the latter has the fastest and most consistent mobile networks.

Malaysia has faster and more consistently available mobile networks than Thailand, the Philippines, and Indonesia, a report by mobile quality measurement company Tutela has said.

According to the report, Malaysia had the fastest average download speeds including both 3G and 4G, at 11.1Mbps, with its score dragged down by U Mobile's 4.3Mbps average in comparison to Celcom's 14.8Mbps, Maxis' 13.3Mbps, and DiGi's 9.6Mbps.

Indonesia had the second-fastest average speeds, at 8.3Mbps; the Philippines third, at 8.1Mbps; and Thailand slowest, at 6Mbps.

For consistency, Tutela tested for how often mobile networks reached the benchmarks of speeds of 4Mbps down and 2Mbps up, 0 percent packet loss, and less than 50 milliseconds of latency.

Malaysia again came in first, with 56.9 percent of connections meeting these needs. It was followed by Thailand, at 45.3 percent; Indonesia, at 40.1 percent; and the Philippines, at 33.3 percent.

Across Malaysia's carriers, Maxis ranked first, at 68.9 percent consistency in the Excellent category; Celcom second, at 61.6 percent; DiGi third, at 57.5 percent; and U Mobile fourth, at 33 percent.

"Malaysia has the best consistent quality of any country, and Maxis's score of 69% is the best of any operator in the region," the report noted.

In Indonesia, Telkomsel took out first place with a 57.8 percent consistent quality score; followed by XL, with 45.9 percent; Indosat Ooredoo, with 35.3 percent; 3, with 34.4 percent; and Smartfren, with 32.6 percent.

"Telkomsel in Indonesia has been investing heavily in 4G infrastructure, and the results are apparent -- its users had the best coverage, download speeds, and consistent quality in the country," the report said.

Filipino telco Smart had a 48.8 percent consistent quality score, while Globe sat at just 23.8 percent. 

In Thailand, TrueMove had a 49.3 percent consistency score thanks to its investments in 4G spectrum; DTAC had a 45.6 percent score; TOT saw 45 percent; and AIS saw 40.1 percent.

"In a region where 90 percent of internet access is via smartphone, wireless operators are under pressure to guarantee higher levels of performance," Tutela VP Tom Luke said.

"We have been able to analyse the mobile quality experienced across the entire region, from big cities to small villages, giving a true and balanced picture of the experience that mobile users are getting."

More than 85 billion mobile network measurements between December 1, 2018, and January 9, 2019, across 10 million mobile devices were used for the report, with Tutela's network quality-testing software running in the background of over 3,000 third-party apps.

According to Tutela, its results differ from other network-measurement companies because it measures typical usage rather than measuring peak performance under ideal conditions.

"We used a 2MB file to perform our download testing and a 1MB file to perform our upload testing. Tutela employs software installed on more than 3,000 partner apps to complete frequent, lightweight tests of around 2MB," it explained.

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