Mobile Network Experience Report Mexico April 2021

Mexico

Mobile Network Experience Report
April 2021

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
Robert Wyrzykowski Senior Analyst

Key findings

AT&T dethrones Telcel in the Voice App Experience category

Ever since we introduced the award for Voice App Experience in Mexico in October 2019, Telcel has won it in all our reports — until now, as AT&T comes first this time. However, AT&T won by a hair, scoring 74.7, just 0.2 points above Telcel. Both operators surpassed 74 points in this category and regained their Acceptable ratings, that their briefly lost in our last report.

Another triumph for AT&T for 4G Availability

AT&T has secured its seventh consecutive victory for 4G availability, this time with a score of 90.3% — 3.6 percentage points ahead of Telcel. This means that AT&T has increased its lead by 0.3 percentage points compared to our previous report. However, Telcel again rated the highest for 4G Coverage Experience, winning the award again with a score of 7.5 points — up by 0.2 points from that seen last time.

Telcel claims the Download Speed Experience award again

Our Telcel users enjoyed the fastest download speeds in Mexico — 26.3 Mbps, significantly higher than those experienced by our Movistar (15.7 Mbps) and AT&T (14.6 Mbps) users. However, Telcel’s Download Speed Experience score slightly declined by 1.1 Mbps (4.1%), while third-placed AT&T managed to reduce the gap between it and its competitors, with an increase of 0.9 Mbps (6.8%).

Telcel wins the Upload Speed Experience, but others are closing the gap

Telcel came victorious in the Upload Speed Experience category yet again, with 10.1 Mbps — beating the runner-up AT&T by 2.2 Mbps. Our users on both AT&T and Movistar observed increased average upload speeds, compared to our previous report — by 0.5 Mbps (7.0%) and 0.8 Mbps (11.9%) respectively.

Introduction

In our latest report on Mexico, Telcel again dominates the awards with five outright wins across the awards that it won back in October 2020: Video Experience, Games Experience, Download Speed Experience, Upload Speed Experience and 4G Coverage Experience. This time, however, AT&T managed to snatch the Voice App Experience award away from Telcel, while keeping hold of the 4G Availability Award.

Mexican operators are yet to launch 5G services on a large commercial scale. The Federal Telecommunications Institute (IFT) made spectrum in 600 MHz and 3.3 GHz bands available for potential use for 5G deployments and the Mexican government recommended a two-year exemption in annual licence payments for operators willing to roll out 5G networks in the 600 MHz and 1500 MHz, based on commercial concessions that will be issued in 2021 and 2022.

In January 2021, Movistar confirmed the completion of the first stage of its network migration to AT&T’s infrastructure in several Mexican states and cities, based on the last mile wireless capacity access agreement signed in November 2019. The first stage of network migration allowed Movistar to expand its 4G coverage to a further 6.2 million inhabitants. Movistar will continue with the second stage in 2021.

In February 2021, ALTAN Redes (Red Compartida), a 700 MHz open access wholesale network signed an agreement with the Mexican government, which will enable all three mobile operators — AT&T, Movistar and Telcel — to use ALTAN Redes’ infrastructure to provide connectivity to areas with less than 5,000 inhabitants. This will help to expand 4G coverage in Mexico and bring mobile broadband services to previously underserved areas. Another initiative undertaken to provide coverage to underserved locations is a multi-band spectrum auction, announced by the IFT. The tender will offer a combination of regional and national licenses in the 800 MHz, 1900 MHz, 1700/2100 MHz and 2.5 GHz bands, with the specific coverage obligations for the states of Chiapas, Guerrero, Oaxaca and Veracruz. The formal submission of bids will not happen until September 2021.

Our results in this report are based on measurements collected across all major mobile operators in Mexico – AT&T, Movistar and Telcel – over the period of 90 days between December 1, 2020 and February 28, 2021.

Opensignal Awards Table

Mobile Experience Awards, Mexico
April 2021, Mexico Report
Video Experience
Games Experience
Voice App Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
4G Availability
4G Coverage Experience
Download Image
Mobile Experience Awards Winners
April 2021, Mexico
Video Experience
Games Experience
Voice App Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
4G Availability
4G Coverage Experience
Download Image

Overview

Click on metric labels below for a quick preview
Video Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
61.8
Movistar
60.0
Telcel
71.1
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

National Analysis

Video Experience

Telcel wins the Video Experience award for the fifth time in a row — and has remained in the Very Good category. Both Movistar and AT&T experienced improvements in their scores — Movistar has increased by 3.0 points (5.2%), while AT&T’s improved by 1.3 points (2.1%) — which places them in the Good rating (55-65). Telcel retained a strong lead over its competitors, although this has declined from 10.5 points to 9.3.

Video Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
61.8
Movistar
60.0
Telcel
71.1
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Video Experience
Supporting Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Video Experience
63.6 (± 0.23) 70.4 (± 0.22) 76.1 (± 0.07)
3G Video Experience
49.4 (± 0.84) 35.5 (± 0.63) 49.5 (± 0.35)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Video Experience in 0-100 points
64 (± 0.23)
70 (± 0.22)
76 (± 0.07)
3G Video Experience in 0-100 points
49 (± 0.84)
36 (± 0.63)
49 (± 0.35)
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Looking at our users’ experience broken down by mobile technology generation, our Telcel users enjoyed an Excellent (75 or above) 4G Video Experience, while Movistar rated as Very Good (65-75). Video Experience quantifies users’ perceived quality of video streamed to mobile devices on a scale from 0 to 100 by measuring real-world video streams over an operator's network. The videos tested include a mixture of resolutions and are streamed directly from the world’s largest video content providers.

Games Experience

Telcel has won the Games Experience award for the third consecutive time, scoring 46.0 — 1.7 points (3.9%) more than in our previous report. AT&T was ranked second, but our users on its network have enjoyed a 3.1 point (7.6%) improvement in their Games Experience — which allowed AT&T to narrow the gap between it and Telcel from 2.9 points to 1.5.

Games Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
44.6
Movistar
36.9
Telcel
46.0
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Games Experience
Supporting Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Games Experience
50.7 (± 0.29) 41.9 (± 0.26) 53.0 (± 0.19)
3G Games Experience
32.4 (± 0.13) 32.4 (± 0.10) 34.8 (± 0.06)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Games Experience in 0-100 points
51 (± 0.29)
42 (± 0.26)
53 (± 0.19)
3G Games Experience in 0-100 points
32 (± 0.13)
32 (± 0.10)
35 (± 0.06)
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Opensignal’s Games Experience analyzes how mobile network conditions — including latency, packet loss and jitter — impact the real-time multiplayer mobile gameplay over operators’ networks. 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.

Voice App Experience

AT&T narrowly won in this category for the first time, snatching the award away from the previous winner Telcel. Both operators surpassed 74 points in this category and regained their Acceptable ratings, elevating themselves from the Poor rating that they fell into in our previous report. An acceptable rating means that users were generally satisfied with the quality of voice services, but may have experienced some perceptible call quality impairments.

Voice App Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
74.7
Movistar
70.3
Telcel
74.5
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Voice App Experience
Supporting Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Voice App Experience
76.4 (± 0.13) 73.7 (± 0.18) 76.3 (± 0.08)
3G Voice App Experience
62.8 (± 0.46) 62.2 (± 0.34) 66.9 (± 0.17)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Voice App Experience in 0-100 points
76 (± 0.13)
74 (± 0.18)
76 (± 0.08)
3G Voice App Experience in 0-100 points
63 (± 0.46)
62 (± 0.34)
67 (± 0.17)
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Opensignal's Voice App Experience measures the quality of experience for over-the-top (OTT) voice services — mobile voice apps such as WhatsApp, Skype, Facebook Messenger etc. — using a model derived from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)-based approach for quantifying overall voice call quality and a series of calibrated technical parameters. This model characterizes the exact relationship between the technical measurements and perceived call quality. Voice App Experience for each operator is calculated on a scale from 0 to 100.

Download Speed Experience

As was the case in our previous report, Telcel is the clear winner, commanding a significant lead over its competitors. Our Telcel users experienced the fastest download speeds in the country — 26.3 Mbps — beating those seen on Movistar’s (15.7 Mbps) and AT&T’s (14.6 Mbps) networks. Compared to our last report, Telcel’s Download Speed Experience score has slightly decreased — by 1.1 Mbps (4.1%). The average download speeds seen by our AT&T users increased by 0.9 Mbps (6.8%), narrowing the gap between AT&T and second-placed Movistar to 1.1 Mbps.

Download Speed Experience
in Mbps
AT&T
14.6
Movistar
15.7
Telcel
26.3
0 7.5 15 22.5 30
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Download Speed Experience
Supporting Metrics
in Mbps
4G Download Speed
16.0 (± 0.10) 21.0 (± 0.14) 31.1 (± 0.09)
3G Download Speed
5.3 (± 0.08) 3.4 (± 0.05) 5.9 (± 0.04)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Download Speed in Mbps
16 (± 0.10)
21 (± 0.14)
31 (± 0.09)
3G Download Speed in Mbps
5 (± 0.08)
3 (± 0.05)
6 (± 0.04)
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Looking at the breakdown by network generations, Telcel and Movistar 4G Download Speed scores have fallen slightly. Telcel’s average speed as experienced by Opensignal users dropped by 6.2%, from 33.2 Mbps to 31.1 Mbps, while Movistar noted a decline of 4.7%, from 22 Mbps to 21.0 Mbps. By contrast, AT&T’s 4G speed recorded a 5.8% boost in our tests and reached 16.0 Mbps.

Upload Speed Experience

Telcel won the Upload Speed Experience, with 10.1 Mbps — 2.2 Mbps more than AT&T and 3.1 Mbps more than Movistar. While Telcel beat the runner-up by 27.6%, its lead fell from the 37.2% that was seen in our previous report. Both AT&T and Movistar saw surges in their upload speeds — by 0.5 Mbps (7.0%) and 0.8 Mbps (11.9%) respectively.

Upload Speed Experience
in Mbps
AT&T
7.9
Movistar
7.1
Telcel
10.1
0 3.75 7.5 11.25 15
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Upload Speed Experience
Supporting Metrics
in Mbps
4G Upload Speed
8.9 (± 0.07) 9.6 (± 0.08) 12.2 (± 0.04)
3G Upload Speed
1.3 (± 0.03) 1.0 (± 0.02) 1.4 (± 0.01)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Upload Speed in Mbps
9 (± 0.07)
10 (± 0.08)
12 (± 0.04)
3G Upload Speed in Mbps
1 (± 0.03)
1 (± 0.02)
1 (± 0.01)
Mobile Network Experience Report | April 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

The fastest average 4G upload speeds — 12.2 Mbps — were seen on Telcel’s network,down 0.3 Mbps (2.4%) compared to our previous report. Movistar had the second highest 4G Upload Speed score, reaching 9.6 Mbps with a 6.8% improvement since last time.

4G Availability

AT&T has won the 4G availability category for the seventh time in a row — rising back above the 90% mark, after it dropped below it in our last report. AT&T’s score was 3.6 percentage points ahead of Telcel and 8.0 percentage points ahead of Movistar. All three operators’ 4G Availability scores have increased since last time. AT&T’s rose by 2.2 percentage points, while Movistar and Telcel have seen increases of 2.6 and 1.9 percentage points, respectively.

4G Availability
% of time
AT&T
90.3
Movistar
82.3
Telcel
86.7
0 23.75 47.5 71.25 95
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

Our 4G Availability metric shows the proportion of time users with a 4G device and subscription have a 4G connection. It measures what proportion of time people have a 4G network connection, in the places they most commonly frequent, something often missed by traditional coverage metrics.

4G Coverage Experience

Our Telcel users had the best 4G Coverage Experience, as seen by the operator’s score of 7.5 points — 0.2 more than in the previous report. Telcel’s score is significantly higher than AT&T’s score of 5.7 points, which remained unchanged since our last report). Movistar saw a modest improvement of 0.1 points to reach 3.8 points, which means that it significantly lags behind its competitors in this report.

4G Coverage Experience
in 0-10 points
AT&T
5.7
Movistar
3.8
Telcel
7.5
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

Our 4G Coverage Experience metric is a measure of how mobile subscribers experience 4G coverage on an operator’s network. Measured on a scale of 0-10, it analyzes the locations where customers of a network operator received a 4G signal relative to the locations visited by users of all network operators. It measures the mobile coverage experience in all the locations that matter most to everyday users.

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.

More about Methodology

Subscribe to our newsletter and get our latest reports and analyses delivered right to your inbox every 2 weeks. We will not share your email address with third parties.

Journalists, please retain the Opensignal logo and copyright
(© Opensignal Limited) information when using this image.

This image may not be used for any commercial purpose, including use in advertisements or other promotional content, without prior written consent.

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

Subscribe to our Newsletter

and receive Opensignal reports in your email

About our Newsletter