The exploding number of smartphones is a tough challenge for all mobile network providers. How well are they prepared for the ever increasing bandwidth hunger? While travelling through Germany on a route that covered almost 4000 km by car, train, public transport and on foot, CHIP ONLINE and their measurement partners NET CHECK and Focus Infocom thoroughly checked the four German providers. The test setup aimed to reflect typical user behavior, i.e making mobile calls and mobile surfing.
As in the preceding years, Focus Infocom provided the measurement hardware used in this year’s test: The drive test vehicle carried a four-channel DMTS measurement system equipped with four Nokia C5 mobiles for voice testing and also an XGMA smartphone-based test system. In addition, two backpack smartphone systems were used. The Android software running on the smartphones performed both data and voice tests including speech quality evaluation.
While the drive test vehicle travelled on a route that covered urban and rural areas on freeways, highways and country roads, the backpack systems were used to perform indoor and outdoor walk tests and tests in public transport. Between the cities, different types of trains (high speed ICE as well as slower inter-city connections) were used.
The data services tested included webbrowsing, HTTP upload, HTTP download and YouTube® video streaming, thus reflecting typical mobile user scenarios like accessing a website, uploading photos to Facebook, downloading apps or music and watching YouTube videos.
The test parameters and KPI were based on ETSI standards and recommendations. For the report, great care was taken to process the final KPI and their evaluation (for example, the weight attributed to different modules) to meet the requirements of a benchmark test addressed to a broad public audience, namely, make them easily understandable and ensure a close relation to actual user experience.
And the winner is …
The test had a clear winner but also revealed that all networks are facing problems with the steep rise in smartphone usage, and have to continue optimizing and expanding their networks to be up to the challenge.
For more information on Focus Infocom’s DMTS and XGMA Smartphone measurement solutions, contact us.
Founded in 1993, Focus Infocom is a leading manufacturer of test equipment for wireless networks. In addition to a complete product line that covers not only drive and walk test equipment including smartphone-based systems but also proven post processing solutions, Focus Infocom offers its customers customized solutions, project consulting and support.