Broadband speed comparable to region


4G services may be a recent phenomenon in Myanmar, but the mobile broadband experience in terms of reach and speed, particularly in Yangon, is actually comparable to that of more developed cities in the region.

In fact, 4G availability in Yangon is the fourth highest in ASEAN at over 80 percent, trailing Bangkok, Singapore and Jakarta but ahead of Kuala Lumpur, Phnom Penh, Ho Chi Minh City and Manilla, according to a May report by OpenSignal.

In its first State of Mobile Networks report for Myanmar, OpenSignal analysed data from more than 80 million measurements collected in the first quarter to see how the 3G and 4G services of MPT, Ooredoo and Telenor compared. The report does not include Viettel-backed MyTel and Amara Communications’ Ananda.

OpenSignal found that the country’s three major operators delivered not only fast speeds but also a high level of LTE access. In telecommunications, Long-Term Evolution (LTE) is a standard for high-speed wireless communications for mobile devices and data terminals.

All three of Myanmar’s 4G providers averaged LTE download speeds greater than 28 Mbps, which is more than 11 Mbps faster than the global average, according to OpenSignal’s measurements.

Though Myanmar’s operators are still expanding their 4G reach, in Yangon, they’ve already managed to provide a high level of LTE access. “Not only have MPT, Ooredoo and Telenor managed to achieve a relatively high level of 4G availability for new LTE entrants, their average 4G speeds are surprisingly fast, especially when compared against their Southeast Asian peers,” according to the OpenSignal report.

MPT separated itself from the pack in 4G upload speed, averaging upstream connections of 13.7 Mbps, more than 2 Mbps faster than its competitors, the report said.

Outside of Yangon and beyond the country’s borders, Myanmar is also bucking a trend throughout South and Southeast Asia. Many of Myanmar’s neighbours, particularly India and Thailand, have focused on increasing their 4G reach at the expense of LTE capacity.

“Consequently we see high levels of 4G availability throughout the region, but relatively slow speeds,” the report said.

For example, Thailand and India ranked among the top 20 globally in 4G availability, but the pair also occupied the bottom five of 4G speed rankings, according to OpenSignal.

Myanmar, on the other hand, is performing well beyond its regional peers in 4G speed. “Though its 4G networks are still young, the country has already achieved 4G availability levels similar to several of its neighbours. Myanmar may have been late to the 4G party, but it’s more than made up for lost time.”

Source: Myanmar Times

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