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How Italian operators can leverage their local mobile experience to improve their user shares - September 2023

In this new analysis, Opensignal measures the differences between Italian operators’ national market shares and those in cities. We also compare these local shares against the competitiveness of operators’ user experience to establish where the national operators might be under/over performing.


In Italian cities, all five national operators — Iliad, TIM, WindTre, Fastweb and Vodafone — can take advantage of Opensignal’s local mobile experience analytics to maximize their user shares and pursue greater commercial returns. As presented in the current analysis, operators can use the available intelligence on mobile network experience across their footprint — including Games Experience, Video Experience, Download & Upload Speed Experience and Availability, to select the appropriate strategy to win greater local market shares. 


This is an update of an analysis from August 2022 to see how the market has changed in the last year. In the previous analysis Opensignal has shown that across European markets better network experience tends to result in larger market shares of users on operators’ networks. Opensignal has also shown that 5G Availability can help explain user churn in Italy — with our users on average finding significantly better 5G network availability on their new operator network after switching.



Looking at the positions of Fastweb, Iliad, TIM, Vodafone and WindTre across 21 Italian cities — we find their local active user shares often vary compared with their national position. For each operator, we refer to their national share as their “Fair Share” in this analysis, and the difference between it and their local user shares is plotted in percentage points in the chart above, resulting in three segments:


  • Over Fair Share: positive numbers show that the operator has a larger local active user share compared to its national Fair Share.
  • Under Fair Share: where an operator has smaller local share compared to its national Fair Share. 
  • No clear difference: where observed difference with the national share falls within ±2 percentage points.


Under Fair Share



In cities where an operator is Under Fair Share, it should highlight the aspects of mobile experience where it has the edge over its rivals to boost its user acquisition. This can be done by communicating with potential customers in-store, through direct marketing, or with tailored advertising. For example: 


  • In Palermo, Vodafone’s local user share is 7.6 percentage points Under Fair Share. However, across listed cities our Vodafone users there have the best Video Experience, Games Experience, Download Speed Experience, and Upload Speed Experience. With targeted campaigns that highlight this, Vodafone could bring attention of consumers to its local superiority in user experience to increase its user share. 
  • In Parma, Napoli and Taranto, Iliad is between 2.8 and 7.1 percentage points Under Fair Share, but at the same time has leading user experience in at least two out of five metrics in each city. Iliad can use this message to complement its customer communication, such as around price or value for money.
  • TIM is 7.5 percentage points Under Fair Share in Genova, where our TIM users have the best experience in four out of five metrics. TIM therefore is particularly well placed to pursue a higher market share in Genova, as well as other cities in the Under Fair Share table where it has leading user experience.


Over Fair Share



By looking at those cities where operators are Over Fair Share, operator marketing retention teams can use mobile network experience results to defend their market position. Additionally, where their network experience may be weaker, network teams can use Opensignal analytics to build an investment business case to improve it and defend their strong market share position. For example: 


  • TIM has a much larger user share in Firenze and Prato compared to its national average — 11.5 and 9.7 percentage points Over Fair Share, respectively. TIM can leverage its unbeaten position in Video Experience and Download Speed Experience, to defend against its competitors in these two cities, as well as in the other cities on the list.
  • WindTre is 6.3, 3.9 and 3.4 percentage points Over Fair Share in Verona, Venice and Catania, respectively. In these three cities it has a leading user experience position in at least three out of five listed metrics and can use that to keep its higher local user shares there as well as in other cities listed.
  • Fastweb can look to defend its 2.6 percentage point Over Fair Share lead in Taranto, by promoting its leading Games Experience and Download Speed Experience in the city.


Operators have opportunities to leverage mobile experience to support commercial goals


Having built a clear picture of Italian operators’ local strengths and weaknesses, each can devise a strategy appropriate for their position. For example, each operator should adjust how it uses its mobile network experience strengths according to its situation in each city:


  • TIM can aim to strengthen its commercial execution because it is the only operator where the majority of the 21 cities analyzed are Under Fair Share with 13 vs five cities in the Over Fair Share group. On average among cities under, TIM is 4.4 percentage points below the national average.
  • Iliad is in a similar position to TIM and can also use its network experience strengths to attack its rivals. It has five cities Under Fair Share and seven cities Over Fair Share, and a strong showing in terms of user experience in cities where it is lagging behind – where its difference between national results was 6.9 percentage points on average.
  • Vodafone is well positioned to gain market shares in six cities that are Under Fair Share and preserve existing shares in three cities that are Over Fair Share. As Vodafone has a strong showing in terms of user experience in the cities where it is Under Fair Share, the operator is best suited to benefit from the analysis — it leads in four out of five included metrics in its underperforming cities.
  • WindTre has more cities where it needs to take defensive positions – three cities Under Fair share, and eight cities in the Over Fair Share group. For WindTre, using mobile experience for retention marketing will help to hold onto local market shares.
  • Fastweb is Under Fair Share in two cities but is Over Fair Share in five. It therefore needs to work to preserve its user share position in more instances. The operator is well suited to use its leading position in Video Experience and Download Speed Experience where it is underperforming. 


Opensignal analytics can identify local opportunities at greater granularity than we show here if required, and can be the independent authoritative source for the quality of the local mobile experience to support operators’ customer acquisition.