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Business News of Monday, 12 December 2016

Source: Graphic.com.gh

NCA warns telcos on quality of service after monitoring services

The National Communications Authority (NCA) has notified telecom operators in the country of its intention to apply swift sanctions on those that continue to offer poor quality services to customers.

They have up to January next year to fix any defects in their systems as detected in the month of September this year.

The report of the industry regulator, posted on its website upon an assessment of the networks and the subsequent findings said, “upon the publication of these findings, all operators are directed to improve any obligation in default by January, 2017. Sanctions will be applied to operators on district capitals that persist in default after January, 2017.”

Basing its report on the performance of operators in the Western Region, for instance, it said all operators, except Tigo and Glo, complied with the Data Access Success Rate obligation in all the available district capitals tested.

“Tigo failed Data Access Success Rate at Daboase, Mpohor, Sefwi Bodi, Shama and Wassa Akropong. Glo on the other hand also failed Data Accesss Success Rate in Takoradi, Tarkwa and Wassa Akropong.

On Data Drop Rate, the findings revealed, “All operators complied with the licence threshold of less than one per cent in the available district capitals in the Western Region tested.

According to the NCA, Data Drop Rate is the probability to drop in connection to a public server without end user’s intervention. Data Drop Rate should be equal to or less than one per cent.

On this, the findings revealed that all operators, except MTN, were compliant with the licence threshold of Data Throughput in all the available district capitals in the region under review which were tested. It said MTN failed the Data Througput licence condition at Asankragua.

“Throughput is the rate of data transfer. As per the 3G licence obligations, the minimum data transfer rate for 90 per cent of data connections should be 256kbps or better,” it said.

In pursuance of obligations of the 3G Cellular Mobile Licence of Telecommunication Operators, the consumer perspective of the quality of data services are tested to ensure the compliance of operators with the obligations on service quality to the user.

It made it clear that the report was based on findings on quality of data service in the Western Region between 11th September and 23rd September, 2016 for all operators except Expresso, due to technical challenges.

The total number of subscribers of mobile data in the country rose to 19,331,239 as of the end of September.

This represented a penetration rate of 69.22 per cent as posted by the NCA, the industry regulator.

The figure for September is as against the 19,125,469 subscribers recorded in August the same year.

In the period under review, MTN’s mobile data subscribers shot up to 9,745,986 as against the August figure of 9,608,952. By that, the company’s market share for the month of September stood at 50.42 per cent as against 50.24 per cent in the previous month. This is a clear indication that MTN controls more than half of the market as against all the players put together in the industry.

Vodafone followed with a mobile data subscriber number of 3,314,912 in September. Although it increased marginally from 3,301,319 in August, the company’s total market share dipped slightly from 17.26 per cent in August to 17.15 in September.

Airtel’s mobile data subscribers for September 2016 stood at 3,092,700 as against the 3,082,800 recorded in August. However, its market share for the month dropped marginally to 16.00 per cent from 16.12 per cent the previous month.

Tigo’s data subscribers for September 2016 rose to 2,872,375 from 2,817,896 in August, but unlike Vodafone and Airtel, the company’s market share for the month under review rose to 14.86 per cent from 14.73 per cent in August.

Meanwhile, Glo became the only loser in both market share and in subscriber numbers.

For instance, the company recorded data subscriber figures of 265,085 at the end of September 2016, down from 271,756 in August. This reflects a market share of 1.37 per cent for September as against 1.42 per cent in August.