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Australia

Mobile Network Experience Report
October 2023

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, Principal Analyst Data Collection Period: Jul 01 - Sep 28, 2023

Australia

Mobile Network Experience Report
October 2023

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, Principal Analyst

Data Collection Period: Jul 01 - Sep 28, 2023

Key Findings

Telstra wins both coverage experience awards outright

Telstra is the first Australian operator to win Opensignal’s new Coverage Experience and 5G Coverage Experience awards. It wins Coverage Experience outright with a score of 9.4 points on a 10-point scale, giving it a lead of 1.2 points over second-placed Optus’ 8.2 points, while Vodafone is in last place with 6.3 points. For 5G Coverage Experience, Telstra comes top with 5.5 points, giving it a lead of 2.3 points over Optus’ 3.2 points. Vodafone brings up the rear with 2.9 points. Opensignal’s coverage experience metrics represent the experience users receive as they travel around areas where they would reasonably expect to find coverage.

Optus users enjoy the best on-demand and live video experience in Australia

Optus is the outright winner of all four awards for video experience — Video Experience, Live Video Experience, 5G Video Experience and Live Video Experience. The two Video Experience awards are for the experience of our users when streaming on-demand video – either when measured across all generations of mobile technology (Video Experience) or when connected to 5G (5G Video Experience). Similarly, the two live video experience awards reflect the experience of our users when viewing real-time video streams such as live sporting events on their smartphones.

Optus extends its 5G Download Speed winning streak

Optus wins the 5G Download Speed award outright for the fifth time in a row, as our Optus users continue to see the fastest average 5G download speeds in Australia. It wins with a score of 226.5Mbps, 24.6Mbps (12.2%) faster than the speeds seen by Telstra users and 2.2 times faster than Vodafone users’ 102.5Mbps. However, Telstra continues to be the sole winner of the overall Download Speed Experience award, coming top this time with a score of 60.1Mbps, while Optus and Vodafone follow with scores of 57.5Mbps and 50.5Mbps, respectively.

Vodafone leaps further ahead on 5G Availability

Vodafone’s grip on the 5G Availability award has further strengthened from the last report. This time it wins with a score of 39.7% – giving it a lead of 20.6 percentage points over second-placed Telstra’s 19.1%, while Optus is in last place with 14.5%. Vodafone’s score has risen by an impressive 8.9 percentage points since the last report, while Optus’ has risen by 2.4 percentage points and Telstra’s remains statistically unchanged. Our Vodafone 5G users saw a similar improvement in the proportion of time they spent with an active 5G connection last time around with a rise of 8.5 percentage points.

The best overall multiplayer gaming experience is with Optus

Optus continues to be the outright winner of the overall Games Experience award. It wins this time around with a score of 74.6 points on a 100-point scale, giving it a lead of 3.1 points over second-placed Vodafone’s 71.5 points. In addition, in a change from the last report, Optus is now a joint winner for 5G Games Experience — alongside the previous outright winner, Vodafone. The two operators share the award with statistically tied scores of 80.8-81.7 points, while Telstra is in last place with 79.5 points.

Mobile Experience Awards

October 2023, Australia Report
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Market Overview

Optus has the lion’s share of awards this time around, winning six awards outright and being a joint winner in a further three categories. The operator takes home four out of five 5G experience awards either jointly or outright.

Vodafone is the sole winner of the 5G Availability and Upload Speed Experience awards and shares three awards with Optus: 5G Games Experience, Availability and Consistent Quality. Vodafone was recently recognized as a 5G Global Leader and a 5G Global Rising Star for 5G Availability in Opensignal’s 5G Global Mobile Network Experience Awards 2023

Telstra wins four awards outright, including the Download Speed Experience award and both new awards for the geographic coverage of populated areas — Coverage Experience and 5G Coverage Experience.

This time around, we have added four new metrics — Live Video Experience, 5G Live Video Experience, Coverage Experience and 5G Coverage Experience. The live video experience awards recognize operators for our users’ experience when streaming video in real-time, in contrast to the video experience metrics that report on users’ on-demand experience. In addition, we have introduced Consistent Quality, which replaces the Excellent Consistent Quality and Core Consistent Quality awards that featured in previous reports.

Optus struck an agreement with SpaceX to boost its mobile coverage using SpaceX’s Starlink satellite constellation in July 2023. It expects to roll out SMS services in late 2024, followed by voice and data in late 2025. The use of satellite connectivity to augment terrestrial mobile networks is particularly suited to Australia given its vast territory and the sizeable proportion that lacks mobile coverage.

Telstra and Vodafone’s plan to share network infrastructure in regional areas is no more as the Australian Competition Tribunal (ACT) has upheld the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s decision to deny authorization. In addition, both Telstra and Vodafone have opted not to appeal ACT’s decision.

In this report, we've analyzed real-world data gathered in the 90 days starting on July 1, 2023 and ending on September 28, 2023, to see how Australia’s three national operators — Optus, Telstra and Vodafone — stack up.

Overall Experience
5G Experience
Coverage
Consistency
Video Experience
Live Video Experience
Games Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Optus
68.1
Telstra
65.1
Vodafone
66.9
017.53552.570
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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Live Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Optus
59.8
Telstra
55.3
Vodafone
58.0
016.53349.566
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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Games Experience
in 0-100 points
Optus
74.6
Telstra
70.2
Vodafone
71.5
019385776
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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Download Speed Experience
in Mbps
Optus
57.5
Telstra
60.1
Vodafone
50.5
016.53349.566
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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Upload Speed Experience
in Mbps
Optus
7.9
Telstra
8.4
Vodafone
9.5
02.557.510
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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National Analysis
Regional Analysis

National Analysis

Optus wins the Video Experience award for the second time in a row. It comes top this time around with a score of 68.1 points on a 100-point scale, giving it a lead of 1.2 points over Vodafone’s 66.9 points, while Telstra remains in last place with a score of 65.1 points. Optus’ score means that it is the only Australian operator to place in the Very Good (68-78) category. This means that our Optus users, on average, are able to stream video at 1080p or better with satisfactory loading times and little stalling. Vodafone and Telstra place one category lower – Good (58-68).

Video Experience scores account for adaptive bitrate streaming (ABR), a technology that allows Opensignal to accurately represent users’ real video experience including video streams up to 4K quality.

Definitions

Opensignal’s Video Experience quantifies the quality of video streamed to mobile devices by measuring real-world video streams over an operator's networks. The metric is based on an International Telecommunication Union (ITU) approach, built upon detailed studies which have derived a relationship between technical parameters, including picture quality, video loading time and stall rate, with the perceived video experience as reported by real people. To calculate video experience, we are directly measuring video streams from end-user devices and using this ITU approach to quantify the overall video experience for each operator on a scale from 0 to 100. The videos tested include a mixture of resolutions — including Full HD (FHD) and 4K / Ultra HD (UHD) — and are streamed directly from the world’s largest video content providers.

In addition to Video Experience, we report on the following metrics related to video experience:

  • 5G Video Experience: The average Video Experience of Opensignal users when they were connected to an operator’s 5G network.
  • Video Experience – 5G Users: The average Video Experience of Opensignal users with a 5G device and a 5G subscription across an operator's networks. It factors in 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G video experience along with the availability of each technology.
  • 4G Video Experience: The average Video Experience of Opensignal users on an operator's 4G network.
  • 3G Video Experience: The average Video Experience of Opensignal users on an operator’s 3G network.

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National Analysis

Optus is the first Australian operator to win Opensignal’s new Live Video Experience award. It does so outright with a score of 59.8 points on a 100-point scale and a winning margin of 1.8 points, given runner-up Vodafone’s score of 58 points. Telstra brings up the rear with 55.3 points.

Definitions

Opensignal’s Live Video Experience quantifies the quality of real-time video streamed to mobile devices by measuring video streams over an operator's network. The metric extends the existing International Telecommunication Union (ITU) approach used for Opensignal's on-demand Video Experience metric, built upon detailed studies which have derived a relationship between technical parameters, including live playback offset, picture quality, video loading time and stall rate, with the perceived live video experience as reported by real people. To calculate live video experience, we are directly measuring live video streams from end-user devices and using this extension of ITU's approach to quantify the overall live video experience for each operator on a scale from 0 to 100. The videos tested include a mixture of resolutions and are streamed directly from the world’s largest video content providers.

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National Analysis

Optus wins the overall Games Experience award outright for the fourth report in a row. This time around, Optus scores 74.6 points on a 100-point scale, giving it a lead of 3.1 points over second-placed Vodafone’s 71.5 points. Telstra is in last place with 70.2 points. All three operators place in the Fair (65-75) category. This means that users find their experience to be ‘average’. In most cases the game is responsive to the actions of the player with most users feeling like they have control over the game. The majority of players notice a delay between their actions and the outcomes in the game.

Definitions

Opensignal’s Games Experience measures how mobile users experience real-time multiplayer mobile gaming on an operator’s network. Measured on a scale of 0-100, it analyzes how our users’ multiplayer mobile gaming experience is affected by mobile network conditions including latency, packet loss and jitter.

Games Experience 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.

Calculating Games Experience starts with measuring the end-to-end experience from users’ devices to internet end-points that host real games. The score is then measured on a scale from 0 to 100.

In addition to Games Experience, we report on the following metrics related to games experience:

  • 5G Games Experience: The average Games Experience of Opensignal users when they were connected to an operator’s 5G network.
  • Games Experience – 5G Users: The average Games Experience of Opensignal users with a 5G device and a 5G subscription across an operator's networks. It factors in 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G games experience along with the availability of each technology.
  • 4G Games Experience: The average Games Experience of Opensignal users on an operator's 4G network.
  • 3G Games Experience: The average Games Experience of Opensignal users on an operator's 3G (e.g. UMTS/HSPA or CDMA 1X EV-DO) network.

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National Analysis

Telstra continues its remarkable Download Speed Experience winning streak — the last time our Australian users on another operator observed the fastest average overall download speeds was back in the April 2018 report when Vodafone placed first. Telstra wins this time around with a score of 60.1Mbps, giving it a lead of 2.6Mbps over runner-up Optus’ 57.5Mbps. Vodafone is in last place with 50.5Mbps.

Definitions

Measured in Mbps, Download Speed Experience represents the typical everyday speeds a user experiences across an operator’s mobile data networks.

In addition to Download Speed Experience, we report on the following metrics related to download speeds:

  • 5G Download Speed: The average download speed observed by Opensignal users with active 5G connections.
  • Download Speed Experience – 5G Users: The average download speeds experienced by Opensignal users with a 5G device and a 5G subscription across an operator’s networks. It factors in 2G, 3G, 4G, and 5G download speeds along with the availability of each technology.
  • 4G Download Speed: The average downlink speed observed by Opensignal users when they were connected to 4G.
  • 3G Download Speed: The average downlink speed observed by Opensignal users when they were connected to 3G (e.g. UMTS/HSPA or CDMA 1X EV-DO).

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National Analysis

Vodafone remains the outright winner of the Upload Speed Experience award. Our Vodafone users observe average overall upload speeds of 9.5Mbs, 1.1Mbps (13.1%) faster than Telstra users’ 8.4Mbps. Optus continues to be in last place, this time with a score of 7.9Mbps.

Definitions

Upload Speed Experience measures the average upload speeds for each operator observed by our users across their mobile data networks. Typically upload speeds are slower than download speeds, as current mobile broadband technologies focus resources on providing the best possible download speed for users consuming content on their devices. As mobile internet trends move away from downloading content to creating content and supporting real-time communications services, upload speeds are becoming more vital and new technologies are emerging that boost upstream capacity.

In addition to Upload Speed Experience, we report on five supporting metrics related to upload speeds:

  • 5G Upload Speed: The average upload speed observed by Opensignal users with active 5G connections.
  • Upload Speed Experience – 5G Users: The average upload speeds experienced by Opensignal users with a 5G device and a 5G subscription across an operator’s networks. It factors in 2G, 3G, 4G, and 5G upload speeds along with the availability of each technology.
  • 4G Upload Speed: The average uplink speed observed by Opensignal users when they were connected to 4G.
  • 3G Upload Speed: The average uplink speed observed by Opensignal users when they were connected to 3G (e.g. UMTS/HSPA or CDMA 1X EV-DO).

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Regional Analysis

Optus has the largest collection of regional overall experience awards — collecting eight outright wins and 18 joint wins. Vodafone picks up four outright wins and 17 joint victories, while Telstra has four outright wins and shares the winners’ podium with one or more other operators eight times.

Optus wins outright for Video Experience in New South Wales and is a joint winner in the remaining six regions, alongside Telstra in South Australia; with Vodafone in the Northern Territory, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia; and as part of a three-way tie in Tasmania.

Optus is the outright winner for Live Video Experience in New South Wales, Northern Territory and South Australia. It is a joint winner in the remaining four regions — alongside Vodafone in Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia and with both Vodafone and Telstra in Tasmania.

For Games Experience, Optus wins outright in New South Wales and Western Australia, while being a joint winner in the remaining regions. Vodafone picks up joint wins across four regions for Games Experience, while Telstra does the same in three.

Telstra dominates regionally in terms of Download Speed Experience, winning outright in New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania. Optus comes top in Northern Territory and Victoria, while Vodafone is a joint winner alongside Optus in Western Australia. The fastest regional average overall download speeds are observed by our Telstra users in South Australia – 73.9Mbps, the only instance where an operator’s Download Speed Experience score is above 70Mbps.

Average upload speeds are another story, Vodafone wins outright in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia, and shares the top spot in Northern Territory and South Australia — with Optus and Telstra, respectively. All three operators are on the winners’ podium in Tasmania.

Regional Analysis Summary: Australia, Mobile Network Experience Report, October 2023

Region
Video Experience
Live Video Experience
Games Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
New South Wales
O
O
O
T
V
Northern Territory
O
V
O
O
V
O
O
V
Queensland
O
V
O
V
O
V
T
V
South Australia
O
T
O
O
T
V
T
T
V
Tasmania
O
T
V
O
T
V
O
T
V
T
O
T
V
Victoria
O
V
O
V
O
T
O
V
Western Australia
O
V
O
V
O
O
V
V
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2023 | © Opensignal Limited
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Selected region
  • J-R
    • New South Wales
    • Northern Territory
    • Queensland
  • S-Z
    • South Australia
    • Tasmania
    • Victoria
    • Western Australia
Video Experience
in New South Wales
in 0-100 points
Optus
67.8
Telstra
66.0
Vodafone
65.9
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Live Video Experience
in New South Wales
in 0-100 points
Optus
60.1
Telstra
56.8
Vodafone
57.3
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Games Experience
in New South Wales
in 0-100 points
Optus
77.9
Telstra
74.5
Vodafone
74.5
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Download Speed Experience
in New South Wales
in Mbps
Optus
60.2
Telstra
65.0
Vodafone
47.3
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Upload Speed Experience
in New South Wales
in Mbps
Optus
8.8
Telstra
9.0
Vodafone
9.4
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Video Experience
in Northern Territory
in 0-100 points
Optus
62.5
Telstra
55.4
Vodafone
64.2
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Live Video Experience
in Northern Territory
in 0-100 points
Optus
54.6
Telstra
46.8
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Games Experience
in Northern Territory
in 0-100 points
Optus
58.9
Telstra
54.2
Vodafone
65.3
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Download Speed Experience
in Northern Territory
in Mbps
Optus
45.3
Telstra
33.8
Vodafone
32.3
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Upload Speed Experience
in Northern Territory
in Mbps
Optus
8.6
Telstra
6.7
Vodafone
6.8
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Video Experience
in Queensland
in 0-100 points
Optus
67.0
Telstra
63.9
Vodafone
66.2
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Live Video Experience
in Queensland
in 0-100 points
Optus
58.3
Telstra
53.1
Vodafone
57.0
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Games Experience
in Queensland
in 0-100 points
Optus
73.5
Telstra
70.8
Vodafone
71.9
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Download Speed Experience
in Queensland
in Mbps
Optus
45.6
Telstra
58.0
Vodafone
47.4
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Upload Speed Experience
in Queensland
in Mbps
Optus
6.8
Telstra
7.7
Vodafone
9.4
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Video Experience
in South Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
69.4
Telstra
68.1
Vodafone
67.1
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Live Video Experience
in South Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
60.8
Telstra
58.6
Vodafone
57.8
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Games Experience
in South Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
72.2
Telstra
72.3
Vodafone
73.9
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Download Speed Experience
in South Australia
in Mbps
Optus
60.1
Telstra
73.9
Vodafone
50.1
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Upload Speed Experience
in South Australia
in Mbps
Optus
6.7
Telstra
9.3
Vodafone
9.5
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Video Experience
in Tasmania
in 0-100 points
Optus
67.8
Telstra
66.3
Vodafone
67.2
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Live Video Experience
in Tasmania
in 0-100 points
Optus
59.2
Telstra
55.3
Vodafone
56.6
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Games Experience
in Tasmania
in 0-100 points
Optus
74.4
Telstra
73.7
Vodafone
70.7
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Download Speed Experience
in Tasmania
in Mbps
Optus
42.9
Telstra
59.3
Vodafone
40.2
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Upload Speed Experience
in Tasmania
in Mbps
Optus
9.1
Telstra
8.9
Vodafone
8.7
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Video Experience
in Victoria
in 0-100 points
Optus
68.9
Telstra
66.6
Vodafone
68.4
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Live Video Experience
in Victoria
in 0-100 points
Optus
60.5
Telstra
56.9
Vodafone
59.8
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Games Experience
in Victoria
in 0-100 points
Optus
76.4
Telstra
75.4
Vodafone
70.7
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Download Speed Experience
in Victoria
in Mbps
Optus
65.8
Telstra
62.5
Vodafone
54.9
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Upload Speed Experience
in Victoria
in Mbps
Optus
8.9
Telstra
8.8
Vodafone
9.9
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Video Experience
in Western Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
68.5
Telstra
63.0
Vodafone
67.1
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Live Video Experience
in Western Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
59.5
Telstra
53.2
Vodafone
58.1
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Games Experience
in Western Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
64.2
Telstra
53.9
Vodafone
59.3
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Download Speed Experience
in Western Australia
in Mbps
Optus
56.5
Telstra
51.5
Vodafone
58.0
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Upload Speed Experience
in Western Australia
in Mbps
Optus
6.1
Telstra
7.3
Vodafone
9.5
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5G Video Experience
5G Live Video Experience
5G Games Experience
5G Download Speed
5G Upload Speed
5G Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Optus
75.4
Telstra
75.0
Vodafone
73.7
020406080
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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5G Live Video Experience
in 0-100 points
Optus
68.7
Telstra
66.7
Vodafone
65.8
017.53552.570
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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5G Games Experience
in 0-100 points
Optus
81.7
Telstra
79.5
Vodafone
80.8
021.54364.586
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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5G Download Speed
in Mbps
Optus
226.5
Telstra
201.9
Vodafone
102.5
057.5115172.5230
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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5G Upload Speed
in Mbps
Optus
16.2
Telstra
16.7
Vodafone
14.1
05101520
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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National Analysis
Regional Analysis

National Analysis

Optus is the new outright winner of the 5G Video Experience award, having shared the award with Telstra in the previous report. Optus scores 75.4 points on a 100-point scale, giving it a 0.4-point lead over Telstra – the former joint winner. Vodafone remains in last place, scoring 73.7 points this time around.

5G Video Experience scores account for adaptive bitrate streaming (ABR), a technology that allows Opensignal to accurately represent users’ real video experience including video streams up to 4K quality.

All three operators continue to place in the Very Good (68-78) category for the experience of our users when streaming mobile video over 5G connections. This means that our users are, on average, able to stream video at 1080p or better with satisfactory loading times and little stalling.

Definitions

5G Video Experience quantifies the quality of mobile video experienced by Opensignal users on real-world video streams when they were connected to 5G. The metric is based on an International Telecommunication Union (ITU) approach, built upon detailed studies which have derived a relationship between technical parameters, including picture quality, video loading time and stall rate, with the perceived video experience as reported by real people. To calculate 5G Video Experience, we are directly measuring video streams from end-user devices and using this ITU approach to quantify the video experience observed by our users on each operator’s 5G network on a scale from 0 to 100. The videos tested include a mixture of resolutions — including Full HD (FHD) and 4K / Ultra HD (UHD) — and are streamed directly from the world’s largest video content providers.

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National Analysis

Optus is the first Australian operator to win the new 5G Live Video Experience award. It does so with a score of 68.7 points on a 100-point scale and a lead of two points over Telstra’s 66.7 points. Vodafone is in last place with 65.8 points.

Definitions

Opensignal’s Live Video Experience quantifies the quality of real-time video streamed to mobile devices by measuring video streams over an operator's network. The metric extends the existing International Telecommunication Union (ITU) approach used for Opensignal's on-demand Video Experience metric, built upon detailed studies which have derived a relationship between technical parameters, including live playback offset, picture quality, video loading time and stall rate, with the perceived live video experience as reported by real people. To calculate live video experience, we are directly measuring live video streams from end-user devices and using this extension of ITU's approach to quantify the overall live video experience for each operator on a scale from 0 to 100. The videos tested include a mixture of resolutions and are streamed directly from the world’s largest video content providers.

5G Live Video Experience quantifies the quality of mobile video experienced by Opensignal users on real-world live video streams when they were connected to 5G.

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National Analysis

Optus and Vodafone are joint winners of the 5G Games Experience award — a change from the previous report when Vodafone won it outright. The two operators have statistically tied scores of 80.8-81.7 points, while Telstra is in last place with 79.5 points.

All three operators continue to place in the Good (75-85) category. This means that most of our users in Australia deem their experience acceptable when playing multiplayer mobile games over 5G connections. The gameplay experience is generally controllable and the user receives immediate feedback between their actions and the outcomes in the game. Most users do not experience a delay between their actions and the game.

Definitions

5G Games Experience measures how mobile users experience real-time multiplayer mobile gaming on an operator's 5G network. It analyzes how our users’ multiplayer mobile gaming experience was affected by mobile network conditions including latency, packet loss and jitter. 5G Games Experience for each operator is calculated on a scale from 0 to 100.

5G Games Experience 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. Calculating 5G Games Experience starts with measuring the end-to-end experience from users’ devices to internet end-points that host real games.

Learn more

National Analysis

Optus is the outright winner of the 5G Download Speed award for the fifth time in a row. It wins this time with a score of 226.5Mbps, 24.6Mbps (12.2%) faster than the speeds seen by our Telstra users and 2.2 times faster than Vodafone users’ 102.5Mbps. Optus’ lead has increased significantly from the 14.6Mbps it commanded in the last report as Telstra’s score has dropped by 13.1Mbps, while Optus’ is statistically unchanged. The average 5G download speeds observed by our Vodafone users fell by 4.3Mbps.

Definitions

5G Download Speed shows the average download speed experienced by Opensignal users across an operator’s 5G network. 5G Download Speed for each operator is calculated in Mbps (Megabits per second).

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National Analysis

Telstra continues to be the sole winner of the 5G Upload Speed award. This time around our Telstra users observe average 5G upload speeds of 16.7Mbps, 0.5Mbps (3.1%) faster than the 16.2Mbps seen by Optus users and 2.6Mbps faster (18.7%) faster than the 14.1Mbps observed by Vodafone users.

Definitions

5G Upload Speed measures the average upload speeds experienced by Opensignal users across an operator’s 5G network. 5G Upload Speed for each operator is calculated in Mbps (Megabits per second).

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Regional Analysis

As is to be expected given that Optus either wins or jointly wins four out of five national 5G experience awards, it has the largest haul of regional 5G experience awards — winning outright six times and collecting 14 joint wins. Telstra also picks up 14 joint wins, but only wins outright three times. Vodafone does not win any 5G experience awards outright but collects 11 joint wins.

No operators win outright for 5G Video Experience, with both Optus and Telstra sharing the winners’ podium across all five regions analyzed and Vodafone being a joint winner in Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.

Optus wins outright for 5G Live Video Experience in New South Wales and Victoria, and is a joint winner in the remaining regions, alongside Vodafone in Queensland and Western Australia and as part of a three-way statistical with Vodafone and Telstra in South Australia.

For 5G Games Experience, Optus is the sole winner in Western Australia, and shares first place with Telstra in Victoria. In the other three analyzed regions (New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia) all three operators share first place due to three-way statistical ties.

In contrast to the other categories, there are no regional joint winners for 5G Download Speed — Optus claims the prize in New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia, while Telstra does the same in Queensland and South Australia. These wins are unchanged from the previous report. The fastest regional average 5G download speeds are observed by our Optus users in Victoria – 272.5Mbps.

Telstra comes top for 5G Upload Speed in South Australia and is a joint winner across the remaining analyzed regions, while both Optus and Vodafone are joint winners in two regions alongside Telstra – in New South Wales and Victoria for Optus and in Queensland and Western Australia for Vodafone. However, Telstra is less dominant than it was in the previous report when it was the outright winner in New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia.

Regional Analysis Summary: Australia, Mobile Network Experience Report, October 2023

Region
5G Video Experience
5G Live Video Experience
5G Games Experience
5G Download Speed
5G Upload Speed
New South Wales
O
T
O
O
T
V
O
O
T
Queensland
O
T
V
O
V
O
T
V
T
T
V
South Australia
O
T
V
O
T
V
O
T
V
T
T
Victoria
O
T
O
O
T
O
O
T
Western Australia
O
T
V
O
V
O
O
T
V
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2023 | © Opensignal Limited
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Selected region
  • J-R
    • New South Wales
    • Queensland
  • S-Z
    • South Australia
    • Victoria
    • Western Australia
5G Video Experience
in New South Wales
in 0-100 points
Optus
75.7
Telstra
75.5
Vodafone
72.9
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5G Live Video Experience
in New South Wales
in 0-100 points
Optus
69.3
Telstra
67.9
Vodafone
65.1
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5G Games Experience
in New South Wales
in 0-100 points
Optus
84.3
Telstra
84.6
Vodafone
84.4
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5G Download Speed
in New South Wales
in Mbps
Optus
258.6
Telstra
214.8
Vodafone
88.2
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5G Upload Speed
in New South Wales
in Mbps
Optus
19.7
Telstra
18.7
Vodafone
14.0
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5G Video Experience
in Queensland
in 0-100 points
Optus
75.1
Telstra
74.5
Vodafone
74.0
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5G Live Video Experience
in Queensland
in 0-100 points
Optus
67.1
Telstra
65.2
Vodafone
65.7
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5G Games Experience
in Queensland
in 0-100 points
Optus
81.5
Telstra
81.6
Vodafone
81.8
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5G Download Speed
in Queensland
in Mbps
Optus
138.4
Telstra
197.6
Vodafone
118.5
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5G Upload Speed
in Queensland
in Mbps
Optus
11.6
Telstra
15.8
Vodafone
14.9
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5G Video Experience
in South Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
75.6
Telstra
75.8
Vodafone
74.6
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5G Live Video Experience
in South Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
69.0
Telstra
68.7
Vodafone
66.7
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5G Games Experience
in South Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
79.3
Telstra
80.1
Vodafone
81.9
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5G Download Speed
in South Australia
in Mbps
Optus
187.7
Telstra
250.9
Vodafone
110.4
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5G Upload Speed
in South Australia
in Mbps
Optus
11.8
Telstra
16.8
Vodafone
13.1
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5G Video Experience
in Victoria
in 0-100 points
Optus
75.3
Telstra
75.5
Vodafone
74.2
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5G Live Video Experience
in Victoria
in 0-100 points
Optus
69.1
Telstra
67.1
Vodafone
66.7
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5G Games Experience
in Victoria
in 0-100 points
Optus
82.3
Telstra
82.4
Vodafone
80.4
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5G Download Speed
in Victoria
in Mbps
Optus
272.5
Telstra
206.6
Vodafone
98.9
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5G Upload Speed
in Victoria
in Mbps
Optus
18.6
Telstra
17.9
Vodafone
13.8
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5G Video Experience
in Western Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
75.0
Telstra
73.9
Vodafone
74.4
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5G Live Video Experience
in Western Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
68.3
Telstra
65.0
Vodafone
66.5
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5G Games Experience
in Western Australia
in 0-100 points
Optus
73.5
Telstra
63.6
Vodafone
66.3
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5G Download Speed
in Western Australia
in Mbps
Optus
189.0
Telstra
157.6
Vodafone
144.0
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5G Upload Speed
in Western Australia
in Mbps
Optus
10.8
Telstra
13.3
Vodafone
14.1
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Optus

Telstra

Vodafone

Coverage Experience
5G Coverage Experience
Availability
5G Availability
Coverage Experience
in 0-10 points
Optus
8.2
Telstra
9.4
Vodafone
6.3
02.557.510
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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5G Coverage Experience
in 0-10 points
Optus
3.2
Telstra
5.5
Vodafone
2.9
01.534.56
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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Availability
% of time
Optus
99.2
Telstra
99.1
Vodafone
99.2
0255075100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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5G Availability
% of time
Optus
14.5
Telstra
19.1
Vodafone
39.7
011.52334.546
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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National Analysis
Regional Analysis

National Analysis

Telstra is the first Australian to win Opensignal’s new Coverage Experience award. It does so outright with a score of 9.4 points on a 10-point scale, giving it a lead of 1.2 points over second-placed Optus’ 8.2 points, while Vodafone is in last place with 6.3 points.

Definitions

The Opensignal Coverage Experience metric measures the extent of mobile networks in the places people live, work and travel. The metric represents the experience users receive as they travel around areas where they would reasonably expect to find coverage.

Traditional coverage metrics typically estimate either a percentage of land area covered, or a percentage of population covered; often neither will be an accurate measurement of the true user expectation and experience. In many markets there are areas where neither population density nor geographic area reflect the importance of coverage to users. For example, in a large mountain range most users will not expect coverage in the wilderness, but poor coverage in the relatively small area of a ski resort is critical for the enjoyment of a holiday. Estimates based purely on population give undue significance to coverage in the most densely populated areas.

Coverage Experience measures geographic coverage of populated areas and therefore more accurately reflects the coverage expectations and experience of typical users. It can give a result that is somewhat different to traditional estimates based on either geographic or population measures. The metric uses a scale from 0 to 10.

Map Definition

The coverage maps show the locations where we received measurements from users connecting with 3G or better mobile service. Each map provides an indication of the areas in which it is possible to obtain mobile service from that mobile operator.

Learn more

National Analysis

As with Coverage Experience, Telstra wins the new 5G Coverage Experience award outright, making it the first Australian operator to do so. Telstra comes top with 5.5 points, giving it a lead of 2.3 points over Optus’ 3.2 points. Vodafone brings up the rear with 2.9 points.

Definitions

The Opensignal Coverage Experience metric measures the extent of mobile networks in the places people live, work and travel. The metric represents the experience users receive as they travel around areas where they would reasonably expect to find coverage.

Traditional coverage metrics typically estimate either a percentage of land area covered, or a percentage of population covered; often neither will be an accurate measurement of the true user expectation and experience. In many markets there are areas where neither population density nor geographic area reflect the importance of coverage to users. For example, in a large mountain range most users will not expect coverage in the wilderness, but poor coverage in the relatively small area of a ski resort is critical for the enjoyment of a holiday. Estimates based purely on population give undue significance to coverage in the most densely populated areas.

Coverage Experience measures geographic coverage of populated areas and therefore more accurately reflects the coverage expectations and experience of typical users. It can give a result that is somewhat different to traditional estimates based on either geographic or population measures. The metric uses a scale from 0 to 10.

5G Coverage Experience shows the proportion of places Opensignal users with a 5G device and a 5G subscription had an active 5G connection.

Map Definition

The coverage maps show the locations where we received measurements from users connecting with 3G or better mobile service. Each map provides an indication of the areas in which it is possible to obtain mobile service from that mobile operator.

Learn more

National Analysis

Vodafone and Optus share the Availability award with identical scores of 99.2%, a change from the last report when Optus was the outright winner. Telstra is only fractionally behind the two front-runners with a score of 99.1%.

Definitions

Our availability metrics are not a measure of a network’s geographical extent. They won’t tell you whether you are likely to get a signal if you plan to visit a remote rural or nearly uninhabited region. Instead, they measure what proportion of time people have a network connection, in the places they most commonly frequent — something often missed by traditional coverage metrics. Looking at when users have a connection rather than where, provides us with a more precise reflection of the true user experience.

We also keep track of the instances that leave mobile users most frustrated: when there is no signal to connect to at all. The most common dead zones users struggle with occur indoors. As most of our availability data is collected indoors (as that’s where users spend most of their time), we’re particularly astute at detecting areas of zero signal.

Our availability metrics take a user-centric, time-based approach that complements the user-centric and geographical-based methodology used by our reach metrics.

Availability shows the proportion of time all Opensignal users on an operator’s network had either a 3G, 4G or 5G connection.

Map Definition

The coverage maps show the locations where we received measurements from users connecting with 3G or better mobile service. Each map provides an indication of the areas in which it is possible to obtain mobile service from that mobile operator.

Learn more

National Analysis

Vodafone’s grip on the 5G Availability award has intensified since the previous report. It now wins with a score of 39.7% and a lead of 20.6 percentage points over second-placed Telstra’s 19.1%, while Optus is in last place with 14.5%. Vodafone’s score has risen by a remarkable 8.9 percentage points since the last report, while Optus’ has risen by 2.4 percentage points and Telstra’s remains statistically unchanged. Our Vodafone 5G users saw a similar improvement in the proportion of time they spent with an active 5G connection last time around with a rise of 8.5 percentage points.

Definitions

Our availability metrics are not a measure of a network’s geographical extent. They won’t tell you whether you are likely to get a signal if you plan to visit a remote rural or nearly uninhabited region. Instead, they measure what proportion of time people have a network connection, in the places they most commonly frequent — something often missed by traditional coverage metrics. Looking at when users have a connection rather than where, provides us with a more precise reflection of the true user experience.

We also keep track of the instances that leave mobile users most frustrated: when there is no signal to connect to at all. The most common dead zones users struggle with occur indoors. As most of our availability data is collected indoors (as that’s where users spend most of their time), we’re particularly astute at detecting areas of zero signal.

Our availability metrics take a user-centric, time-based approach that complements the user-centric and geographical-based methodology used by our reach metrics.

5G Availability shows the proportion of time Opensignal users with a 5G device and a 5G subscription had an active 5G connection.

Map Definition

The coverage maps show the locations where we received measurements from users connecting with 3G or better mobile service. Each map provides an indication of the areas in which it is possible to obtain mobile service from that mobile operator.

Learn more

Regional Analysis

This time around, the contests over the regional Availability awards are so close that there are no outright winners — a change from the last report when Optus won outright in New South Wales and Telstra was the only operator in first place in Tasmania. Now all three operators share the recognition in New South Wales, while Optus statistically ties with Telstra in Tasmania. Despite the lack of outright wins, Optus has the largest haul of regional Availability awards, as it is a joint winner across six out of seven regions, while Vodafone and Telstra have each racked up five joint wins.

Turning to 5G Availability, the national winner Vodafone wins outright across all five analyzed regions – New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia, as was the case in the previous report.

Regional Analysis Summary: Australia, Mobile Network Experience Report, October 2023

Region
Availability
5G Availability
New South Wales
O
T
V
V
Northern Territory
T
V
Queensland
O
T
V
V
South Australia
O
V
V
Tasmania
O
T
Victoria
O
T
V
Western Australia
O
V
V
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2023 | © Opensignal Limited
Download Image
Selected region
  • J-R
    • New South Wales
    • Northern Territory
    • Queensland
  • S-Z
    • South Australia
    • Tasmania
    • Victoria
    • Western Australia
Availability
in New South Wales
% of time
Optus
99.2
Telstra
99.1
Vodafone
99.1
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5G Availability
in New South Wales
% of time
Optus
15.1
Telstra
21.2
Vodafone
41.8
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Availability
in Northern Territory
% of time
Optus
94.0
Telstra
95.9
Vodafone
97.1
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Availability
in Queensland
% of time
Optus
99.0
Telstra
98.8
Vodafone
99.0
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5G Availability
in Queensland
% of time
Optus
11.8
Telstra
19.7
Vodafone
31.5
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Availability
in South Australia
% of time
Optus
99.3
Telstra
99.1
Vodafone
99.4
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5G Availability
in South Australia
% of time
Optus
15.4
Telstra
20.9
Vodafone
39.5
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Availability
in Tasmania
% of time
Optus
98.9
Telstra
99.0
Vodafone
97.6
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Availability
in Victoria
% of time
Optus
99.3
Telstra
99.3
Vodafone
99.0
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5G Availability
in Victoria
% of time
Optus
16.4
Telstra
19.9
Vodafone
43.1
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Availability
in Western Australia
% of time
Optus
99.0
Telstra
98.7
Vodafone
99.2
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5G Availability
in Western Australia
% of time
Optus
13.1
Telstra
16.5
Vodafone
36.3
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Consistent Quality
Consistent Quality
% of tests
Optus
77.0
Telstra
75.9
Vodafone
77.0
020406080
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
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National Analysis
Regional Analysis

National Analysis

Optus and Vodafone share the Consistent Quality award with identical scores of 77%, while Telstra is in last place with 75.9%. Consistent Quality replaces Excellent Consistent Quality and Core Consistent Quality, which featured in previous reports.

Definitions

Consistent Quality measures if the network is sufficient to support common mobile application requirements at a level that is ‘good enough’ for users to maintain (or complete) various typical tasks on their devices.

We combine different experience indicators such as download speed, upload speed, latency, jitter, packet discard, and time to first byte to calculate Consistent Quality. These components are evaluated against thresholds recommended by various more demanding common applications used for a range of common tasks.

To calculate the metric value, the proportion of tests that pass the requirements of Consistent Quality is multiplied by the test success ratio, which is the proportion of completed tests to all tests conducted. Tests that pass indicate that activities such as video calling, uploading an image to social media, or using smart home applications will be possible without noticeable lag or slowdown.

Learn more

Regional Analysis

Vodafone wins outright for Consistent Quality across four regions — Northern Territory, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia, while also statistically tying for first place with Optus in Tasmania. Meanwhile, Telstra is the sole winner in New South Wales and South Australia. Its score of 81.2% in South Australia is the highest seen across all seven regions.

Regional Analysis Summary: Australia, Mobile Network Experience Report, October 2023

Region
Consistent Quality
New South Wales
T
Northern Territory
V
Queensland
V
South Australia
T
Tasmania
O
V
Victoria
V
Western Australia
V
Mobile Network Experience Report | October 2023 | © Opensignal Limited
Download Image
Selected region
  • J-R
    • New South Wales
    • Northern Territory
    • Queensland
  • S-Z
    • South Australia
    • Tasmania
    • Victoria
    • Western Australia
Consistent Quality
in New South Wales
% of tests
Optus
77.4
Telstra
78.3
Vodafone
74.7
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Consistent Quality
in Northern Territory
% of tests
Optus
54.8
Telstra
55.6
Vodafone
65.1
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Consistent Quality
in Queensland
% of tests
Optus
76.1
Telstra
72.8
Vodafone
77.1
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Consistent Quality
in South Australia
% of tests
Optus
79.5
Telstra
81.2
Vodafone
78.3
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Consistent Quality
in Tasmania
% of tests
Optus
78.1
Telstra
75.2
Vodafone
77.5
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Consistent Quality
in Victoria
% of tests
Optus
78.9
Telstra
78.7
Vodafone
80.5
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Consistent Quality
in Western Australia
% of tests
Optus
68.5
Telstra
72.8
Vodafone
76.3
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Related Analysis

Our Methodology

Collecting billions of individual measurements daily from over 100 million devices globally, Opensignal independently analyzes mobile user experience on every major network operator around the globe.

About Opensignal

Opensignal is the mobile analytics company committed to improving mobile connectivity across the globe. We are the independent authority for understanding the true experience consumers receive on wireless networks.

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