Telkomsel remains the dominant operator in Indonesia for mobile network experience as it wins four of Opensignal’s awards outright and is high up in other award categories. The operator wins Video Experience, Download Speed Experience, Upload Speed Experience and 4G Coverage Experience. However, while Telkomsel has expanded its lead in Upload Speed Experience and 4G Coverage Experience, its rivals whittled away its lead in Video Experience and Download Speed Experience. This is due to relatively greater improvements seen by our users on other national networks.
On the other hand, 3 held onto our Voice App Experience and Games Experience awards. While Smartfren, Indonesia’s 4G-only operator, once again won the 4G Availability award despite ranking just fourth in 4G Coverage Experience.
Overall the mobile network experience in Indonesia has improved across the majority of our award categories, compared to our previous report, with very few exceptions, which is noteworthy given that data consumption has grown significantly in the country over the last year. Indosat users reported the most significant increases in Video Experience and Voice App Experience out of all the operators. Meanwhile, their peers on 3 saw the highest boost in Download Speed Experience and our users on XL enjoyed the biggest increase in 4G Availability, compared to their competitors.
In mid-April, Indonesia's Ministry of Communication and Information (KemKominfo) auctioned
three 10 MHz blocks of TDD spectrum in the 2.3 GHz band of which Telkomsel and Smartfren acquired 20 MHz and 10 MHz, respectively. New spectrum capacity should help Indonesia’s carriers support greater mobile data usage and improve users’ mobile experience in future. While Telkomsel has reportedly launched 5G , using spectrum in the 2.3 GHz band, that is now available in 8 cities, Indosat has reportedly launched 5G in the city of Surakarta using 1800 MHz band. Meanwhile, Smartfren has reportedly carried out 5G trials using the 26GHz mmWave spectrum and XL are aiming to launch 5G following securing their certificate of Operation Eligibility (SKLO) from regulator Kominfo.
Although 5G is in a nascent stage and is a crucial area of focus for Indonesian operators, a significant proportion of its population still relies on old 3G network technology. Moving forward, as the country adopts 5G, Indonesian operators will benefit from migrating 3G-only users to 4G and refarming 2G/3G spectrum bands to 4G services. That will help accelerate the deployment of 4G and 5G networks which could bridge the digital divide in the country and improve smartphone users’ overall mobile network experience. Strong 4G networks will pave the road for a smoother transition to next-generation 5G networks.
In this report, we have analyzed Indonesia's mobile network experience on five national networks — Telkomsel, XL, Indosat, 3 and Smartfren — over 90 days, starting on February 1, 2021, and ending on May 1, 2021, both nationally and regionally.