Mobile Network Experience Report Russia May 2021

Russia

Mobile Network Experience Report
May 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
Sam Fenwick Senior Analyst

Key findings

MegaFon users had the best Video Experience

In our last report, MegaFon and Tele2 were joint winners for the Video Experience award. This time MegaFon is the sole winner due to a 2.7 point increase in its score. This is the second time the operator has won the Video Experience award outright — it achieved the same feat in our May 2020 report. While Tele2’s score also improved, it did so by only 1.1 points — and it is statistically tied for second place with MTS, as the latter’s score rose by two points. The improvement in MTS’ score has pushed it up a category — from Good (55-65) to Very Good (65-75) — putting it in line with MegaFon and Tele2. Beeline has retained its Good rating and remains in last place.

MTS ties with Tele2 for Games Experience and Voice App Experience

In our previous two reports, Tele2 was the outright winner of the Games Experience and Voice App Experience awards. This time, however, it has been forced to share them with MTS as our users on MTS’ network have seen the largest improvements since our last report. The operator’s scores for Games Experience and Voice App Experience rose by 15.3 points (39.9%) and 5.3 points (7.2%), respectively. This is a remarkable turnaround for MTS as in our last report it was the only operator with a Very Poor (under 40) rating for Games Experience and a Poor (66-74) rating for Voice App Experience. This time, MTS has joined its peers in the Poor (40-65) and Acceptable (74-80) categories for these two metrics respectively.

MegaFon comes top for upload speeds

MegaFon is the outright winner of the Upload Speed Experience award after sharing the glory with Beeline in our last report. This marks a return to the state of play seen in our first report on the Russian mobile network experience back in May 2020. MegaFon’s outright win occurred due to a 1.3 Mbps (19.4%) increase in the average upload speeds seen by our users on its network, which outpaced the 0.4 Mbps (5.5%) improvement seen by their Beeline counterparts and gave it a lead of 0.9 Mbps over the previous joint winner. Meanwhile, MTS and Tele2’s scores rose by 0.8 Mbps (12.7%) and 0.5 Mbps (7.7%) to stand at 6.8 Mbps and 6.3 Mbps, respectively.

All four operators’ 4G Availability scores have recovered from the declines seen in our last report

Previously, our users reported falls of 2.7-4.6 percentage points in the proportion of time that they spent connected to 4G (depending on their choice of operator). This time, operators’ 4G Availability scores rose by 3.7-5.7 percentage points with three operators seeing improvements of more than five percentage points. This means that all four operators’ scores are higher than they were in our May 2020 report. MegaFon has made the most progress since then as its score has risen from 80.9% to 83.9%. However, Tele2 remains the winner of the 4G Availability award, claiming it for the third consecutive time.

Introduction

Unlike our last two reports, this time MTS has made its presence felt as it has forced Tele2 to share the Games Experience and Voice App Experience awards. Also, MegaFon has reclaimed sole control of the Video Experience award and Tele2 is also no longer a joint winner. Similarly, MegaFon wins the Upload Speed Experience award outright, stripping Beeline of its only joint victory.

In contrast to the rapidly changing situation seen in our speed and experiential awards, our two measures of the extent of 4G networks have seen no change in award ownership since our first report on the Russian mobile network experience. Tele2 is now the outright winner of the 4G Availability Award for three reports in a row, while MTS has achieved the same feat for 4G Coverage Experience. In addition, in this report Tele2’s 4G Availability score rose back above the 85% mark and it is the only operator in this report with a score that meets or exceeds this milestone.

The average download speeds observed by our Russian users rose by 0.3-1.5 Mbps depending on their choice of operator and MegaFon’s lead has increased slightly from 6.1 Mbps to at least 6.3 Mbps. This is the third report in a row in which MegaFon has been the outright winner of the Download Speed Experience award.

Turning to developments in the Russian mobile market, MTS launched a large-scale 5G pilot network in in 14 locations in Moscow in March using the 4.9 GHz band and announced its plans to expand the pilot to St. Petersburg and Yekaterinburg later this year. More recently, the country’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) gave its preliminary consent in May to an agreement proposed by MegaFon, Beeline, Rostelecom (Tele2’s parent company) and Rostelecom’s Bashtel subsidiary for the joint development of 5G networks.

One factor that will complicate Russia’s 5G rollout is the fact that the majority of the 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum is allocated to satellite communications for government agencies. The telecoms ministry has proposed that the current 3.5GHz fixed-wireless licences will be returned ahead of refarming for initial 5G licences, potentially in 2021 in a limited range before the freeing up of the wider 3.4GHz-3.8GHz band at a later unknown date.

It is worth noting that MTS is the only Russian operator with a commercial licence for new 5G spectrum that is not suited to 4G or 3G — it holds a five-year 24.25GHz-24.65GHz mmWave concession across 83 regions, which was awarded in July 2020. For those readers interested in understanding mmWave’s capabilities Opensignal recently analyzed the mmWave mobile experience in the U.S. and found that our users reported average download speeds of 232.7-692.9 Mbps while connected to mmWave 5G, depending on their choice of operator, but users across all three operators spent less than 1% of their time connected to mmWave 5G.

In this report, we've analyzed our data gathered in the 90 day period beginning February 1 and ending May 1, 2021, to see how Russia’s four national operators — Beeline, MegaFon, MTS and Tele2 — measure up.

Opensignal Awards Table

Mobile Experience Awards, Russia
May 2021, Russia 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
May 2021, Russia
Video Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
4G Availability
4G Coverage Experience
Mobile Experience Awards Draws
May 2021, Russia
Games Experience
Voice App Experience
Download Image

Overview

Click on metric labels below for a quick preview
Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Beeline
63.3
MegaFon
68.3
MTS
66.7
Tele2
66.9
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

National Analysis

Video Experience

Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Beeline
63.3
MegaFon
68.3
MTS
66.7
Tele2
66.9
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Video Experience
Additional Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Video Experience
65.4 (± 0.31) 70.8 (± 0.22) 68.4 (± 0.26) 68.2 (± 0.29)
3G Video Experience
55.1 (± 0.95) 55.4 (± 0.82) 58.7 (± 0.71) 59.9 (± 0.98)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Video Experience in 0-100 points
65 (± 0.31)
71 (± 0.22)
68 (± 0.26)
68 (± 0.29)
3G Video Experience in 0-100 points
55 (± 0.95)
55 (± 0.82)
59 (± 0.71)
60 (± 0.98)
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Games Experience

Games Experience
in 0-100 points
Beeline
52.2
MegaFon
47.0
MTS
53.8
Tele2
54.1
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Games Experience
Additional Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Games Experience
59.1 (± 0.40) 52.0 (± 0.38) 58.7 (± 0.32) 57.0 (± 0.42)
3G Games Experience
36.3 (± 0.21) 35.6 (± 0.15) 37.8 (± 0.28) 41.4 (± 0.67)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Games Experience in 0-100 points
59 (± 0.40)
52 (± 0.38)
59 (± 0.32)
57 (± 0.42)
3G Games Experience in 0-100 points
36 (± 0.21)
36 (± 0.15)
38 (± 0.28)
41 (± 0.67)
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Voice App Experience

Voice App Experience
in 0-100 points
Beeline
76.8
MegaFon
76.2
MTS
78.2
Tele2
78.1
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Voice App Experience
Additional Metrics
in 0-100 points
4G Voice App Experience
78.4 (± 0.17) 77.4 (± 0.16) 79.3 (± 0.13) 78.8 (± 0.17)
3G Voice App Experience
70.8 (± 0.46) 70.1 (± 0.41) 73.0 (± 0.37) 74.6 (± 0.45)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Voice App Experience in 0-100 points
78 (± 0.17)
77 (± 0.16)
79 (± 0.13)
79 (± 0.17)
3G Voice App Experience in 0-100 points
71 (± 0.46)
70 (± 0.41)
73 (± 0.37)
75 (± 0.45)
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Download Speed Experience

Download Speed Experience
in Mbps
Beeline
15.6
MegaFon
22.0
MTS
15.6
Tele2
13.3
0 6.25 12.5 18.75 25
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Download Speed Experience
Additional Metrics
in Mbps
4G Download Speed
17.6 (± 0.17) 24.8 (± 0.19) 17.2 (± 0.14) 14.3 (± 0.12)
3G Download Speed
7.5 (± 0.11) 7.1 (± 0.11) 8.2 (± 0.10) 8.2 (± 0.13)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Download Speed in Mbps
18 (± 0.17)
25 (± 0.19)
17 (± 0.14)
14 (± 0.12)
3G Download Speed in Mbps
8 (± 0.11)
7 (± 0.11)
8 (± 0.10)
8 (± 0.13)
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

Upload Speed Experience

Upload Speed Experience
in Mbps
Beeline
7.1
MegaFon
8.0
MTS
6.8
Tele2
6.3
0 2.5 5 7.5 10
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image
Upload Speed Experience
Additional Metrics
in Mbps
4G Upload Speed
8.4 (± 0.08) 9.3 (± 0.08) 7.9 (± 0.08) 7.2 (± 0.06)
3G Upload Speed
1.7 (± 0.04) 1.5 (± 0.03) 1.8 (± 0.03) 2.1 (± 0.05)
+/- numeric values represent confidence intervals.
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Limited
4G Upload Speed in Mbps
8 (± 0.08)
9 (± 0.08)
8 (± 0.08)
7 (± 0.06)
3G Upload Speed in Mbps
2 (± 0.04)
1 (± 0.03)
2 (± 0.03)
2 (± 0.05)
Mobile Network Experience Report | May 2021 | © Opensignal Inc.

4G Availability

4G Availability
% of time
Beeline
80.7
MegaFon
83.9
MTS
81.5
Tele2
86.1
0 22.5 45 67.5 90
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Download Image

4G Coverage Experience

4G Coverage Experience
in 0-10 points
Beeline
5.6
MegaFon
6.0
MTS
6.4
Tele2
5.5
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
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.

More about Methodology

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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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