Etisalat’s mobile internet speed more than twice as fast as du
ABU DHABI // Mobile internet downloads are nearly three times faster with Etisalat than that of rival operator du, independent tests have found.
As part of the 2014 Telecommunications Regulatory Authority’s (TRA) annual mobile benchmarking survey, the two companies were evaluated on data speed and voice quality.
A comparison of their performance in 4G long-term evolution (LTE) showed the widest margins – with Etisalat consistently outperforming du.
When downloading or uploading files indoors on the fastest available mobile network, Etisalat achieved speeds close to three times those of du, according to TRA data.
Users of Etisalat’s LTE service get up to 24,740 kilobytes per second download speeds and 2,111kbps upload.
Du had a 8,728kpbs download speed and 943kbps upload.
Internet browsing speeds were also faster with Etisalat, with a 12,682kbps download rate. Du, in comparison, was 7,566kpbs, meaning web pages load significantly faster on Etisalat’s LTE mobile internet connection.
When assessing data speed, the regulator performed tests on FTP, the file transfer rate and the speed it takes to send or receive files between two users; and HTTP speed – the internet browsing speed.
Voice indicators, such as call connection and drop rates along with voice quality, had both telecom operators achieving similar scores.
The TRA said the survey was “aimed at helping the UAE become a recognised regional ICT [information and communications technology] hub”, and the collected data ensured the country’s two licensees, Etisalat and du, hold to the conditions of their licences.
“We are working towards performing tests that provide a fair comparison and assessment of the mobile networks services by employing state-of-the-art test equipment used in most organisations and developed countries,” said Saif Bin Ghelaita, the TRA’s director of technology development.
The authority said that “thousands of test calls and application trial runs were performed along with similar tests conducted indoors for 34 buildings or major facilities across different emirates”.
The survey covered more than 13,000 kilometres of the country’s roads at peak hours.
“As ICT sector organisers, we conduct testing and assessments that help track the status of mobile networks in each phase and the range of services provided to increase the standard of service and attain excellence in addition to promoting healthy competition among operators,” said TRA director general Hamad Obaid Al Mansouri.
Fujairah resident Georges Oommen said he returned to Etisalat three years ago after giving du a try.
The Indian said he only used his mobile for social media and did not download large files.
“I don’t notice any difference with the speed,” he said. “I am very comfortable with Etisalat. They provide better coverage.”
A Dubai Marina resident said he had two smartphones, each connected to a different carrier.
He expressed surprise to hear that Etisalat was faster.
“I have no idea why Etisalat still scores more.”
On 2G and 3G, he said, he found, “du’s connection much more consistent and faster”.
“Not to mention, of course, the fact that they don’t block everything possible.”
Neither company commented on the findings.
The release of the TRA’s survey came on the same day as World Telecommunication and Information Society Day. It recognises the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the creation of the International Telecommunication Union.
“Telecommunications, as well as information and communications technology, drive innovation,” said UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon. “The digital revolution has transformed our world.”
“New information and communications technology can help boost the economy and protect the environment.”
Updated: May 17, 2015 04:00 AM