Kenya’s MNOs have best network in Nairobi but coverage poor in other regions

The quality of mobile telephony services in Kenya is best in Nairobi but decline as you move away from the capital, with Upper Eastern and North Rift regions having the worst performance according to results of the Quality of Service (QoS) assessment released by industry regulator.

The QoS study was commissioned by Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) and has findings of the assessment of the performance of mobile networks in the country during the period covering 2014 to 2015.

The assessment was carried out across the country and results are given on countrywide and regional basis. Measurements in some regions had overlaps due to the manner in which the existing road networks traverse what were formerly local government boundaries.

The performance of the mobile network operators was rated best in Nairobi and worst in Upper Eastern and North Rift regions. The rest of the country recorded above average performance.

When all the 3 operators – Safaricom, Airtel Kenya and Orange – were compared in terms of performance in regions against the set targets, Safaricom and Orange met the target for Nairobi (the best covered region) while Airtel Kenya did not.

However, in Central Kenya, only Airtel Kenya met the set QoS targets while its two rivals – Safaricom and Orange – failed.

In western Kenya, Coast, Lower Eastern, Nyanza and South Rift, North Rift and Upper Eastern regions, none of the 3 operators met the CA’s QoS targets.

The QoS assessment is conducted annually to ascertain compliance with the Kenya Information and Communication Act, 1998, the attendant Regulations and license conditions in relation to Quality of Service (QoS).

The report provides the level of conformance of the licensee’s’ services to the set quality of service standards expressed in terms of set of parameters, also referred to as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

The assessment was carried out while the market still had four mobile operators, Safaricom, Airtel, Orange and yuMobile, but the number reduced to three following exit of Essar Telecom (yuMobile) in 2014.

Due to insecurity, the assessment did not cover North Eastern Counties of Mandera and Wajir as well as Marsabit, Samburu and Garissa Counties.

Overall, the report notes that out of the eight parameters, all operators complied with QoS targets on Handover, Call Set Up Time and Signal Strength indicators.


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