Mobile Network Experience Report Uruguay October 2019

Uruguay

Mobile Network Experience Report
October 2019

Opensignal Active Userbase in Uruguay
Total Devices
14,897
Total Measurements
28,181,660
Data Collection Period
Jul 01 Sep 28, 2019

Opensignal is the independent global standard for analyzing consumer mobile experience. Our industry reports are the definitive guide to understanding the true experience consumers receive on wireless networks.

Author
David Nedescu Technical Analyst

Key findings

Antel dominates our awards right out of the gate

Competing against two of the largest companies in the world, state-owned Antel looked like it would be fighting an uphill battle. Both América Móvil and Telefónica operate behemoth networks across the world, with a particular focus on Latin America. Despite lacking similar economies of scale, Antel won four of our six awards, and drew in one.

Movistar raises the bar for 4G Availability in South America

In Movistar’s only winning metric, we see an operator offering our users a 4G Availability that surpasses the 90% mark for the first time on the continent. This sets a precedent in Uruguay, where much of the population is concentrated in Montevideo, and also sets a goal for its larger and more populous neighboring countries to strive to attain.

Good Video Experience across the board, close scores for Voice App Experience

Our users across all operators saw average Video Experience scores within the Good category range. However, the Voice App Experience was different. Despite all three operators being close together, their scores have placed them in different categories. While Movistar ranked Poor and Claro rated Acceptable, Antel averaged just over the 80 point mark, gaining it a Good ranking.

Our Antel users wait the least for content after clicking — by far

With an average of just 51 milliseconds between the user clicking and the data stream starting, our users on Antel’s network experienced one of the lowest average latencies we have ever seen on the continent, bested only by some operators in Chile and Peru. And at 42ms, our Antel users in Montevideo experience similar latencies to the ones we see in London. The Latency Experience in Montevideo for our users on Movistar and Claro was much slower, at 75.9ms and 65.5ms respectively.

Montevideo — same winners, different scores

Experience is not uniformly better in the capital, as Claro saw a decreased Download, Upload, and Video Experience compared to the national average, whereas Antel scored overall higher in Montevideo, with Movistar falling somewhere in between the two. Curiously, the Voice App Experience in the capital hardly deviated from the country averages. Meanwhile, 4G Availability is about 2 percentage points higher for all operators in Montevideo, bringing Movistar’s winning score to 93.4% time on LTE.

Introduction

In our first report on the Uruguay mobile experience, we saw state-owned Antel claim the lion’s share of our awards, besting its multinational-backed rivals. Pitted against two of the largest companies on the planet, Antel won four awards.

To offer some context, Antel has historically been the market leader in Uruguay. However, Telefónica and América Móvil have developed a presence across the continent which is hard to ignore, let alone compete against.

While Uruguay is focused on fiber infrastructure, which reportedly connects about 70% of residential connections, there are still households for which mobile connectivity is the only means of accessing the internet. For the 4% of Antel customers’ households who depend on 3G/4G for internet, mobile experience plays an even larger role.

Opensignal Awards Table

Mobile Experience Awards, Uruguay
October 2019, Uruguay Report
4G Availability
Video Experience
Voice App Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
Latency Experience
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Mobile Experience Awards Winners
October 2019, Uruguay
4G Availability
Video Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
Latency Experience
Mobile Experience Awards Draws
October 2019, Uruguay
Voice App Experience
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Overview

Click on metric labels below for a quick preview
4G Availability
% of time
Antel
85.4
Movistar
90.6
Claro
78.5
0 23.75 47.5 71.25 95
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

National Analysis

4G Availability

One of the main indicators of a country’s mobile experience is the time spent connected to 4G networks, or 4G Availability. In Uruguay, our users’ 4G Availability ranges from 78.5% on Claro to 90.6% on Movistar. For reference, our users on Claro saw a higher share of time spent on 4G than we found in our users in 9 Latin American countries in our State of Mobile Experience report, while the 4G Availability of our users on Movistar’s is higher than for any Latin American country in the same report, with Peru’s users being the closest at an average 83.3% time on LTE.

Although Uruguay’s enviable 4G Availability can be attributed to all three operators, it was Telefónica’s Movistar that won our award with an impressive 90.4%, setting a very high bar, not only for local rivals Antel and Claro, but also for the entire continent, where we have yet to see any other operator reach the 90% national 4G Availability milestone in our reports.

4G Availability
% of time
Antel
85.4
Movistar
90.6
Claro
78.5
0 23.75 47.5 71.25 95
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

Trailing 5 percentage points behind Movistar, our Antel users recorded a 4G Availability of 85.5%, which was in turn 7 percentage points ahead of what our users experienced on América Móvil’s Claro. Even so, being able to connect to 4G networks 78.3% of the time, our users on Claro can access LTE more often than users on the networks with the highest 4G Availability in Colombia, Ecuador, or Costa Rica.

Video Experience

Video Experience in Uruguay is also ahead of its neighboring countries, with a consistently Good rating, which means that there is generally little video stalling and quick loading times on lower resolutions, but still not enough to guarantee a smooth experience particularly at higher resolutions. By comparison, our users in Brazil, Chile, and Peru are split between operators offering Fair and Good Video Experience. Only Argentina shares the accolade of offering our users Good Video Experience via any operator in South America.

Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Antel
63.6
Movistar
60.2
Claro
55.9
Poor Fair Good Very Good Excellent
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
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Video Experience
Supporting Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Video Experience
72.4 (± 1.08) 67.8 (± 1.54) 62.8 (± 3.27)
3G Video Experience
34.7 (± 4.38) 40.9 (± 4.24) 41.0 (± 5.49)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Video Experience in 0-100 points
72 (± 1.08)
68 (± 1.54)
63 (± 3.27)
3G Video Experience in 0-100 points
35 (± 4.38)
41 (± 4.24)
41 (± 5.49)
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Inc.

Although the three Uruguayan operators fall under the same Video Experience ranking, that does not mean they are identical in our metrics. While our users on Claro saw a score of 55.9 (out of 100), bordering the low end of the Good category, our users on Antel scored 63.6 — just 1.4 points away from a Very Good Video Experience across both 3G and 4G.

Voice App Experience

Opensignal recently developed a measurement for Voice App Experience, which uses a model derived from an International Telecommunication Union (ITU)-based approach for quantifying overall voice call quality. Applying this model to our Uruguay users shows a surprisingly close range of scores across the three competing operators, hovering around the Acceptable range of 75-80. In fact, our results were so close for Claro and Antel that they statistically count as a draw, despite their mean values falling in different categories.

Voice App Experience
in 0-100 points
Antel
80.2
Movistar
73.6
Claro
77.7
Impossible to communicate Unintelligible Very Poor Poor Acceptable Good Very Good Excellent
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
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Voice App Experience
Supporting Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Voice App Experience
81.5 (± 0.79) 76.1 (± 1.20) 78.3 (± 1.86)
3G Voice App Experience
75.7 (± 1.82) 67.2 (± 3.71) 76.4 (± 3.20)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Voice App Experience in 0-100 points
82 (± 0.79)
76 (± 1.20)
78 (± 1.86)
3G Voice App Experience in 0-100 points
76 (± 1.82)
67 (± 3.71)
76 (± 3.20)
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Inc.

Movistar is teetering on the edge of an Acceptable Voice App Experience score. But its overall score is dragged down by the relatively poorer 3G Voice App Experience, which, at just 67.2 points, is 11% lower than what our 3G users on Antel and Claro saw. At the same time, Movistar’s 4G Voice App Experience score is comparable to what our Antel and Claro users saw on 3G, which further explains Movistar’s Poor overall Voice App Experience score.

Download Speed Experience

If so far the scores between operators have tended to stick close together, a look at Download Speed Experience offers a sobering view. Our users on Antel’s network experienced on average 4G speeds of 22.9 Mbps. By comparison, our users on Movistar and Claro’s networks experienced average 4G download speeds of only 17.4 and 12.4 Mbps respectively. Overall, at 18.4 Mbps, our Antel users achieved speeds 77% faster than on Claro and 34% faster than on Movistar.

Download Speed Experience
in Mbps
Antel
18.4
Movistar
13.7
Claro
10.4
0 5 10 15 20
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
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Download Speed Experience
Supporting Metrics
in Mbps
4G Download Speed
22.9 (± 0.74) 17.4 (± 0.93) 12.4 (± 1.04)
3G Download Speed
3.6 (± 0.21) 4.5 (± 0.34) 5.9 (± 0.52)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Download Speed in Mbps
23 (± 0.74)
17 (± 0.93)
12 (± 1.04)
3G Download Speed in Mbps
4 (± 0.21)
5 (± 0.34)
6 (± 0.52)
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Inc.

We have recently looked at how faster speeds do not necessarily translate to better Video Experience, and our data on Uruguay offers another pertinent example: while Download Speed Experience for Antel users is nearly double that of Claro users, their Video Experience score is just 14% higher, which is not even enough to place them in a higher quality category. This highlights the importance of calculating these metrics using dedicated models rather than just extrapolating from download speed measurements.

Upload Speed Experience

Upload speed is becoming an increasingly relevant aspect of the user mobile experience with the rise of user-generated content such as photos, audio, and live streamed video. Today, users are more likely to notice a drastic difference in upload speeds than ever before, giving an advantage to our Antel users, who enjoyed 8.5 Mbps in Upload Speed Experience, more than double what our users on Claro’s network saw.

Upload Speed Experience
in Mbps
Antel
8.5
Movistar
5.7
Claro
4.0
0 2.5 5 7.5 10
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Upload Speed Experience
Supporting Metrics
in Mbps
4G Upload Speed
10.8 (± 0.37) 7.7 (± 0.42) 5.2 (± 0.51)
3G Upload Speed
0.7 (± 0.07) 0.7 (± 0.07) 1.4 (± 0.18)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Upload Speed in Mbps
11 (± 0.37)
8 (± 0.42)
5 (± 0.51)
3G Upload Speed in Mbps
1 (± 0.07)
1 (± 0.07)
1 (± 0.18)
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Inc.

Interestingly, we found that our users on Claro’s 3G network consistently get faster speeds in both download and upload than its two national competitors. On 3G Upload Speed Experience, our Claro users were able to reach an average of 1.4 Mbps, which is double that of our Movistar or Antel users. 3G speeds are likely all the more impactful for Claro, whose users recorded the lowest 4G Availability.

Latency Experience

Latency in Uruguay is not as consistent across operators as we've seen in other South American countries. While our Argentinian and Chilean users see just a few milliseconds difference between the best and worst latency, in Uruguay that difference is a staggering 33.2ms. At just 51.1ms nationwide and 42.0ms in Montevideo, we saw our users on Antel's network experience one of the lowest latency scores on the continent. This gives our users on Antel a unique advantage towards enjoying a good gaming experience: a healthy mix of fast download and upload speeds and low latencies.

Latency Experience
in ms The lower the figure the better the latency
Antel
51.1
Movistar
78.3
Claro
66.9
0 20 40 60 80
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Latency Experience
Supporting Metrics
in ms
4G Latency
41.7 (± 0.63) 69.5 (± 0.95) 65.3 (± 1.70)
3G Latency
81.9 (± 3.11) 100.8 (± 3.45) 70.5 (± 2.96)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Latency in ms
42 (± 0.63)
69 (± 0.95)
65 (± 1.70)
3G Latency in ms
82 (± 3.11)
101 (± 3.45)
70 (± 2.96)
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2019 | © Opensignal Inc.

Once again our users on Claro are showing the same pattern as for speeds, wherein their 3G Latency is much closer to their 4G Latency than it is for the other operators. Antel's 4G Latency Experience is close to half its 3G score, while Movistar's is nearly a third better. By comparison, there were barely 5ms separating both of Claro's scores.

Regional Analysis

Reporting national scores for our metrics means that we cluster together measurements from our users from all over the country. However, there is a valid case to be made that users in major cities tend to benefit from the highest level of infrastructure and hence should experience a better mobile experience. On the other hand, cities also tend to be more congested in terms of network traffic due to a higher number and density of users. So what is the overall difference that our users see in mobile experience between the country on average and a metropolitan area within it?

In this first look at Uruguay, Opensignal also compiled scores for Montevideo, the nation’s capital and home to 40% of its population of nearly 3.5 million people. We found that 4G Availability is higher in Montevideo by 2-4 percentage points across all three operators, with Movistar's score in the capital within 1.6 percentage points of the coveted 95% milestone.

When it comes to Video Experience, however, we start seeing what is likely the effect of increased congestion affecting the score of our users on Claro, whose Montevideo scores are 1.8 points lower than their national average. This is not the case for all operators, as we see our Antel users increase their score by 5.5 points, and even our Movistar users achieved a 2.8 higher score in the capital. Conversely, our users in Montevideo did not see a significantly different Voice App Experience, with all operator scores coming within 1 point of their national scores.

Looking at Download and Upload Speed Experience of our Montevideo users we see a fairly consistent trend compared to national scores: our Antel users reach higher speeds in the capital, Claro users reach lower speeds, while Movistar users see a worse Download but a better Upload Speed Experience. However, with the exception of Antel, whose Download Speed Experience was 3.4 Mbps better in Montevideo, these differences are all less than 2 Mbps.

Finally, a glance at Latency Experience further accentuates the schism between Antel and its competitors, where our users on Antel’s network experienced latency scores a remarkable 9ms better in Montevideo than in Uruguay as a whole. At 42ms, our Montevideo users on Antel experience similar latencies to the ones we see in London.

Select any region below to display individual breakdown

Montevideo

4G Availability
in Montevideo
in %
Antel
89.2
Movistar
93.4
Claro
80.0
Download Image
Video Experience
in Montevideo
in 0-100 points
Antel
69.1
Movistar
63.0
Claro
54.1
Download Image
Voice App Experience
in Montevideo
in 0-100 points
Antel
80.2
Movistar
74.6
Claro
76.9
Download Image
Download Speed Experience
in Montevideo
in Mbps
Antel
21.8
Movistar
12.4
Claro
9.3
Download Image
Upload Speed Experience
in Montevideo
in Mbps
Antel
9.4
Movistar
6.3
Claro
3.6
Download Image
Latency Experience
in Montevideo
in ms
Antel
42.0
Movistar
75.9
Claro
65.5
Download Image
Learn more

Opensignal measures the real-world experience of consumers on mobile networks in the places they live, work and travel.

We continually adapt our methodology to best represent the true experience of smartphone users. Therefore, comparisons of the results to past reports should be considered indicative only.

For every metric we calculate statistical confidence intervals indicated on our graphs. When confidence intervals overlap, our measured results are too close to declare a winner. In those cases, we show a statistical draw. For this reason, some metrics have multiple winners.

In our bar graphs we represent confidence intervals as boundaries on either sides of graph bars. In our supporting-metric charts we show confidence intervals as +/- numerical values.

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For every metric we calculate statistical confidence intervals indicated on our graphs. When confidence intervals overlap, our measured results are too close to declare a winner. In those cases, we show a statistical draw. For this reason, some metrics have multiple operator winners.

In our bar graphs we represent confidence intervals as boundaries on either sides of graph bars.

In our supporting-metric charts we show confidence intervals as +/- numerical values.

Why confidence intervals are vital in analyzing mobile network experience

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