Du speaks out on TRA bench-test results
Dubai operator cites service improvements after Etisalat revealed to be three times faster on data transfer rates
UAE operator du has responded to reports of its telecoms rival Etisalat having outperformed it in regulator bench tests, defending its operations as "significantly improved".
The UAE's Telecommunications Regulatory Authority annually evaluates both carriers on voice and data transmission efficiency. While du and Etisalat were close on voice indicators, such as quality and drop rates, indoor data uploads and downloads on 4G networks were three times faster with Abu Dhabi-based Etisalat, than with its Dubai rival.
According to the results released by the TRA, Etisalat's LTE subscribers see up to 24,740 Kbps for data downloads and 2,111Kbps for upload, but du showed only 8,728Kpbs downloads and 943Kbps on uploads.
Web browsing - which uses HTTP, rather than the FTP used for data - was also faster with Etisalat's LTE service, which was found to have a 12,682Kbps download rate, while du's average stood at 7,566Kbps.
But du defended its position as "a service provider that is committed to providing the highest quality of service" and noted areas where it had outperformed Etisalat.
"It is important to note that the TRA benchmark also indicated that compared to other operators in the region, du has shown superior KPIs," the Dubai-based carrier told ITP.net, in an emailed statement. "Furthermore, our data performance overall shows that we have significantly improved our data throughput compared to 2012 and 2013 results, as highlighted by the TRA report."
Du still sees itself as a leader in mobile, claiming to have "pushed the boundaries by achieving the best offered mobile voice quality in the UAE for the third year in a row (2012-14)".
The Dubai operator said its data services "continue to grow" and noted that it had still exceeded quality levels set by the TRA.
"The speed achieved is higher than the maximum quality of service required for HD video streaming on any of today's popular apps," the company said.
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Du has adopted a ‘smart investment' strategy designed to allow the operator flexibility in delivering higher data transfer rates "to meet specific quality-of-service demands".
"Our scores on responding to such specific requirements and providing fully-customised solutions have encouraged us to continuously aim for higher level of customer experience," du said.
The company also trumpeted multiple "major and tremendous milestones" in the evolution of its service portfolio.
"We've been proudly the first to launch MBB (mobile broadband) HSPA+ technology in the UAE," it said. "Similarly, at the right time, we launched our 4G LTE network in 2012. We also announced the launch of our state-of-the-art LTE-Advanced Carrier Aggregation network in the UAE last March. These major milestones are all the result of our ‘smart investment' strategy that puts customers at the heart of our focus and we are very keen on introducing capabilities that can be utilised and experienced by our customers immediately."
The TRA's bench tests are conducted annually to ensure the carriers meet nationally mandated standards for service provision.
"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, director of technology development, TRA, in a statement released earlier this week by the regulator.
TRA director general, Hamad Obaid Al Mansouri added that the tests were meant to "increase the standard of service and attain excellence in addition to promoting healthy competition among operators".