Regulators actively monitor QoS of operators to safeguard consumers’ interests. PTA also regularly conducts QoS survey of different services offered by its licensees but it is pertinent to mention here that PTA is the first known regulator in the world who has conducted a survey in order to check the QoS of International Roaming (IR) facility. The first survey was conducted in 2006 followed by the second phase in 2009 to figure IR QoS parameters and their benchmarking. On the basis of the actual test results, recommendations of standardizing bodies (GSMA, ITU, etc.) and best international practices, following standards were developed to measure IR QoS (Table-1).
|1||Call Completion ratio (CCR)||80%|
|2.||Call Setup Time (CST)||16.5 seconds|
|3.||Mean Opinion score (MoS)||3|
|4.||End to End call delay (E2E)||Preferred 150 msecUp Limit 400 msec|
|5.||Received Caller Line Identification (R-CLI)||99%|
|6.||SMS Success rate (SSR)||95%|
|7.||SMS End 2 End duration (SMS E2E)||Upper limit 90 sec|
Table-1 IR QoS Parameters.
The test results of all the five cellular operators as per above mentioned IR QoS parameters are shown in Figure-1. None of the operator met all the QoS criteria, however Mobilink showed better results compared to other four operators. The performance of Telenor, Ufone & Zong were similar to each other. Figure-1 IR QoS test results.
The compromising results of the survey pushed the regulator to move ahead by development of KPIs (mentioned in Table-2) for inclusion in Service Level Agreement (SLA) between LDIs & CMTOs.
|1.||Call Setup Time (CST)||15 seconds|
|2.||Mean Opinion score (MoS)||≥4|
|3.||End to End delay (E2E)||300 millisecond|
|4.||Received Caller Line Identification (R-CLI)||≥99%|
|5.||Network Efficiency Ratio (NER)||≥99%|
|6.||Average Call duration (ACD)||Monthly basis|
|7.||SMS Success rate (SSR)||99.9%|
Table-2 KPIs List for inclusion in SLAs
The essential parameters for IR billing format were also finalized, and a survey was carried out in Mid 2011 to check the billing discrepancies (results of survey mentioned in Table-3). Mobilink & Telenor met all billing requirements successfully.
|Call duration (hh:mm:sec)||ü||ü||X||ü||ü|
|Location (Operator, Country)||ü||ü||X||X||X|
|IR Traffic i/c, o/g||ü||ü||ü||ü||ü|
|Summary Page (Account history, service details)||ü||ü||ü||ü||ü|
Table-3 IR Billing Parameters Details
ü : means the requirement met by the operator
Despite difficulties faced by operators due to power cuts (blackout/brownout), rising cost of fossil energy, the cellular operators have been trying to maintain services at affordable cost. The regulator is of the opinion that due to lowering of Access Promotion Contribution (APC) and little more effort in retaining the customer, cellular operators will succeed in meeting the criteria shown at Table-1 and appropriate billing format as shown in Table-3.