This is the first time that Opensignal has assessed how mobile users experience real-time multiplayer mobile gaming at the operator-level in the Netherlands. Our users observed a four-way tie between KPN, Tele2, T-Mobile and Vodafone, but unlike their counterparts on other networks, our Vodafone users observed an Excellent (85 or above) Games Experience, which means that the vast majority deemed their network experience when playing multiplayer games over a cellular connection to be acceptable. There was not a noticeable delay in almost all cases.
All of the other operators placed in the Good (75-85) category. This means that most of our users on their networks deemed their experience to be acceptable. Their gameplay experience was generally controllable and they received immediate feedback between their actions and the outcomes in the game. Most users did not experience a delay between their actions and the game.
Measured on a scale of 0-100, Opensignal’s Games Experience metric quantifies the experience when playing real-time multiplayer mobile games on mobile devices connected to servers located around the world. The approach is built on several years of research quantifying the relationship between technical network parameters and the gaming experience as reported by real mobile users. These parameters include latency (round trip time), jitter (variability of latency) and packet loss (the proportion of data packets that never reach their destination). Additionally, it considers multiple genres of multiplayer mobile games to measure the average sensitivity to network conditions. The games tested include some of the most popular real-time multiplayer mobile games (such as Fortnite, Pro Evolution Soccer and Arena of Valor) played around the world.
In another first, this is also the first report since Vodafone retired its 3G network and the start of our data collection period took place after the February 4th switch-off date. However, our Vodafone users have not observed any significant improvements in our measures of the mobile experience that could have benefited from additional spectrum for 4G.
In this report, we've analyzed our data gathered in the 90 days from the start of May 2020 to see how the Netherlands’ four national operators — KPN, T-Mobile, Tele2 and Vodafone — stack up. We continue to treat T-Mobile and Tele2 as separate operators as they still exist as different brands, despite the completion of the merger in early January 2019.
Vodafone launched its 5G network on the 28th of April, while KPN and T-Mobile launched theirs three months later on the 28th of July. Our next Mobile Network Experience report for the Netherlands will therefore be the first opportunity to observe the impact of 5G on the overall experience of our KPN and T-Mobile users. However, given that it is still early days for the country’s 5G networks and that the 3.5 GHz band will not be auctioned until early 2022, we expect the initial impact to be modest.