Paris, 3 February 2009
In 2008, for the eleventh consecutive year, ARCEP evaluated the quality of service of mobile networks in Metropolitan France, testing each operator’s 2G and 3G networks. As required by their authorisations, the operators help finance this study.
These surveys are part of the more general framework of actions ARCEP is conducting to improve electronic communications information to consumers.
- Mobile network speeds in France have doubled in one year
File transfer tests were held in the twelve largest cities in Metropolitan France, using USB keys or PCMCIA cards connected to laptop computers. The results of these tests show bitrates more than double those measured in 2007.
Results show speeds one and a half times higher than those obtained in 2007 for average speeds, and up to two times higher for the highest speeds: bitrates for downloading were1 450 kbit/s on average, and over 4 Mbit/s for the fastest, while speeds observed when sending files reached 400 kbit/s on average, and over 740 kbit/s for the fastest. These speeds were reached using each operator’s highest performing offers, available in shops.
These speeds are comparable to the bitrates offered by entry-level ADSL.
- The quality of other services continues to be satisfactory
Voice telephony service was also tested by making 30 000 calls lasting two minutes, the average length of calls on mobile networks.
Telephony service was first tested in 52 cities with a population of more than 20 000, inside and outside buildings, as well as by a passenger in a vehicle. The results of these tests show that quality of service is being maintained at a high level (98%).
The quality of telephony service was also evaluated on main TGV high-speed train lines, on high-traffic motorways (as a passenger), and in commuter trains in major cities. The results, which can still be improved, show progress in quality on these transportation lines since last year (+4%).
Last, the service quality of SMS, MMS, WAP and videophony in the twelve most densely populated cities was highly satisfactory.
ARCEP plans to expand the next quality of service survey by testing longer calls made in cities with fewer than 20 000 inhabitants.
The complete survey report containing a full description of the test protocol and the detailed results of each operator is available on ARCEP's web site: