MarketLine Blog

Four major mobile networks in the UK put to the test

RootMetrics, a mobile coverage mapping analytics company has released its report on the UK’s mobile network performance. All four major networks in the UK, Vodafone, O2, Three, and EE were all included in the report. EE was the clear winner overall, performing better than all other networks in each category measured, whilst Vodafone ended in last place overall and also in each individual category apart from one.

The company tests three main factors: mobile internet testing, call testing, and text testing. The mobile internet testing was based on performance, where EE came out on top with a RootScore of 81, vastly surpassing Vodafone’s last place score of 30.2. The testing undertaken measured reliability and speed for mobile downloads and uploads, reliability testing the attempts of opening HTTP connections and speed testing the transfer rates that files were downloaded at and web pages completely opened. Other factors such as the time a smartphone takes to connect to an email server or loading apps were also considered in the testing.

Call testing looked at how reliable each network was at placing and maintaining calls. The results for this were somewhat closer together for each network than that of the internet testing, although Vodafone still lagged behind the other providers with a score almost ten RootScore points lower than its nearest competitor, Three. EE remained top of the table with a score of 86.3 whilst Three followed closely behind with a score of 76.3, leaving Vodafone with 66.6.

The final test was the most straightforward of the lot and the order of the results was exactly the same as the call testing mentioned previously. Message success and failure rates were measured to and from phones on the same network and phones on other networks.

The company then compiled the results into two indices summarizing the RootScores, the Reliability Index and the Speed Index. Both indices take the information gathered throughout testing and give an overall reliability and overall speed score. Unsurprisingly, EE was the most reliable with a score that almost doubled that of the lowest, Vodafone. Whilst in terms of speed, the only category that Vodafone didn’t place last in, EE emphatically surpassed its competitors with a score almost 30 points higher than its nearest rival O2, with Vodafone only three points behind them and Three just over three points lower than Vodafone’s speed index score.

RootMetric maintains that their analysis is completely objective and unbiased, purely measuring performance to provide consumers the most up to date, accurate measure of the UK’s four major mobile network providers, so consumers can make an informed decision on what network to use. The news of the survey was not taken lightly by Vodafone, with Senior Corporate Communications Manager at Vodafone UK, Ben Taylor, speaking out against the report claiming that “We believe the way RootMetrics carried out its testing does not appear to follow standard industry practices, or is fully impartial, while it also incorporates data some of which may well be over six months old.”.

Take a look at our related case studies: giffgaff – A unique business model for a saturated market and EE: 4G in the UKAs well as our related SWOT Profiles: Vodafone Group Plc, Telefonica, S.A., Orange SA., and Deutsche Telekom AG.

Posted in Communications, Telecom.

Leave a comment

*Required fields. We will not publish your email address