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Mexico

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: Jun 01 - Aug 29, 2023

Mexico

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: Jun 01 - Aug 29, 2023

Key Findings

The fastest experience is with Telcel

As was the case in the last report. Telcel wins all four speed awards outright — Download Speed Experience, Upload Speed Experience, 5G Download Speed and 5G Upload Speed. Our Tecel users observe average overall download speeds of 28.4Mbps, 10.5Mbps faster than the 17.9Mbps seen by AT&T users. Telcel scores 212Mbps for 5G Download Speed, nearly four times higher than AT&T’s 54.7Mbps.

Telcel users observe the best Coverage Experience

Telcel is the first Mexican operator to win the new Coverage Experience award, doing so with a score of 8.8 points on a 10-point scale — far ahead of AT&T’s 4.4 points. Coverage Experience measures the geographic coverage of populated areas from our users on 2G, 3G, 4G, & 5G connections.

AT&T has the most consistent experience in Mexico

AT&T wins the Consistent Quality award outright with a score of 35.5%, narrowly ahead of Telcel’s 34.3%. Consistent Quality replaces the Excellent Consistent Quality and Core Consistent Quality awards, which featured in previous reports. 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 demanding tasks on their devices.

Telcel users connect to 5G in the most locations and for the most time.

Telcel is the outright winner of the new 5G Coverage Experience award and remains the sole victor for 5G Availability — this is the third report in a row that it has held this accolade. Telcel wins 5G Coverage Experience with a score of 0.8 points on a 10-point scale, while AT&T follows with 0.2 points. Our Telcel 5G users spend 7.1% of their time with an active 5G connection, one percentage point ahead of AT&T users.

AT&T comes top for Availability

Our AT&T users continue to spend the most time with a 3G or better connection — so AT&T remains the outright winner of the Availability award. It wins with a score of 98.7%, ahead of Telcel’s 97.2%. Availability is the proportion of time our users spend connected to 3G or better.

Telcel users have the best overall experience when streaming real-time video, while AT&T wins the 5G Live Video experience award

This is the first Mexican mobile experience report in which we have analyzed our users’ experience when viewing live video streams over cellular connections. Telcel wins the overall Live Video Experience award with a score of 48.1 points on a 100-point scale, ahead of AT&T’s 44.2 points. However, our AT&T users have the best experience in this regard when connected to 5G — AT&T wins the 5G Live Video Experience award with a score of 62.9 points to Telcel’s 59.5 points.

Market Overview

Telcel continues to dominate the awards table, this time racking up 11 outright wins and statistically tying for Voice App Experience and 5G Games Experience alongside AT&T. Telcel’s haul includes all four speed awards and both of the new coverage experience metrics (Coverage Experience and 5G Coverage Experience). AT&T is the outright winner of four awards: 5G Video Experience, 5G Live Video Experience, Availability and Consistent Quality.

While Mexico is planning to auction spectrum in the 600MHz, 1500MHz, 3.3GHz and 3.5GHz bands, there is no firm date for an auction and it is facing head-winds, given that the Ministry of Finance will not reduce the annual rights payments that make it extremely expensive for Mexican operators to hold the rights to spectrum. This is despite the Federal Telecommunications Institute (Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones, IFT) recently warning that the current pricing regime is preventing new entrants, while also stopping current operators from expanding.

In this report we examine the mobile network experience of the two main mobile network operators in Mexico: AT&T and Telcel, over a 90 day-period starting on June 1, 2023 and ending on August 29, 2023, to see how they fared. The overall metrics include measurements from our 5G users. For the 5G awards, we have also analyzed the experience of our users when using 5G technology.

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.

We have ceased reporting on Movistar because it no longer has its own radio access network (RAN) and spectrum. Movistar completed the migration of its users’ traffic to AT&T’s network in July 2022 and relinquished the last of its spectrum licenses.

Overall Experience
5G Experience
Coverage
Consistency
Video Experience
Live Video Experience
Games Experience
Voice App Experience
Download Speed Experience
Upload Speed Experience
Video Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
50.1
Telcel
54.6
014284256
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
Live Video Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
44.2
Telcel
48.1
012.52537.550
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
Games Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
54.9
Telcel
56.8
015304560
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
Voice App Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
74.0
Telcel
73.8
019385776
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
Download Speed Experience
in Mbps
AT&T
17.9
Telcel
28.4
07.51522.530
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
Upload Speed Experience
in Mbps
AT&T
7.2
Telcel
8.8
02.557.510
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image

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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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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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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Definitions

Opensignal's Voice App Experience measures the quality of experience for over-the-top (OTT) voice services — mobile voice apps such as WhatsApp, Skype and Facebook Messenger — using a model derived from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) 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.

In addition to Voice App Experience, we report on the following metrics related to voice app experience:

  • 5G Voice App Experience: The average Voice App Experience of Opensignal users when they were connected to an operator’s 5G network.
  • Voice App Experience – 5G Users: The average Voice App 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 voice app experience along with the availability of each technology.
  • 4G Voice App Experience: The average Voice App Experience of Opensignal users on an operator's 4G network.
  • 3G Voice App Experience: The average Voice App Experience of Opensignal users on an operator's 3G (e.g. UMTS/HSPA or CDMA 1X EV-DO) network.

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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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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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5G Video Experience
5G Live Video Experience
5G Games Experience
5G Voice App Experience
5G Download Speed
5G Upload Speed
5G Video Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
72.6
Telcel
68.4
019385776
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Live Video Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
62.9
Telcel
59.5
016.53349.566
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Games Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
76.5
Telcel
75.9
020406080
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Voice App Experience
in 0-100 points
AT&T
81.4
Telcel
82.3
021.54364.586
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Download Speed
in Mbps
AT&T
54.7
Telcel
212.0
054108162216
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Upload Speed
in Mbps
AT&T
25.7
Telcel
30.2
09182736
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image

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.

Learn more

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.

Learn more

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

Definitions

5G Voice App Experience quantifies the experience of Opensignal users when using over-the-top voice apps — such as WhatsApp, Skype and Facebook Messenger — on an operator’s 5G network. It uses a model derived from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) 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. 5G Voice App Experience for each operator is calculated on a scale from 0 to 100.

Learn more

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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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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AT&T

Telcel

Coverage Experience
5G Coverage Experience
Availability
5G Availability
Coverage Experience
in 0-10 points
AT&T
4.4
Telcel
8.8
02.557.510
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Coverage Experience
in 0-10 points
AT&T
0.2
Telcel
0.8
00.511.52
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
Availability
% of time
AT&T
98.7
Telcel
97.2
0255075100
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image
5G Availability
% of time
AT&T
6.1
Telcel
7.1
02468
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image

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.

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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

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

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

Consistent Quality
Consistent Quality
% of tests
AT&T
35.5
Telcel
34.3
010203040
The brackets represent confidence intervals.
Read why confidence intervals are important.
Download Image

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.

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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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