Canadian mobile analytics company Tutela Technologies has announced an agreement to help Telefónica Mexico improve its network quality. The partnership will give Telefónica Mexico access to quality crowd-sourced network data from over 150,000 Mexican mobile phone users, including details of signal strength and quality, device usage and download speed patterns.
The insights will enable the operator to analyze the experience of its own and rival networks, identify opportunities for improvement and troubleshoot performance problems as they arise, according to Tutela, which said that it collects over 10 billion mobile quality data points every day globally, with over 100 million data points per day in Mexico alone.
Spain-based multinational Telefónica, operating in Mexico under the Movistar brand, has experienced a difficult time in Mexico since entering the market over a decade and a half ago. While Movistar is number two in the market in terms of subscribers, it lags far behind the leader, América Móvil-owned Telcel, with 25 million subscribers to Telcel’s 75 million as of the first quarter of 2017. Furthermore, Movistar is facing a major challenge from new entrant AT&T, which has over 12 million subscribers and is growing fast. Telcel has also become a more aggressive competitor lately, ever since national regulators imposed measures to reduce its market dominance. As for Movistar, it has seen revenues drop more than 16 percent year-over-year, with subscriber numbers flat.
In Open Signal’s March 2017 tests of Mexican mobile networks, Movistar came in last of the top three operators, with Telcel leading in 4G/LTE and AT&T taking the lead for combined 3G and 4G quality. Movistar won in no categories. With these facts in mind, it seems that boosting network quality would be a very good strategic move for Movistar.
By partnering with Tutela, Telefónica Mexico will be engaging the services of a well-reputed firm with the ability to garner the high-quality, meaningful data that the operator will need in order to chart a course forward for its network. Granular data that pinpoints exactly where and how the network is not delivering what customers want will be essential, and comparative data about rival operators’ networks will likewise be indispensible.
While rumors have gone around in the media to the effect that Telefónica has been considering exiting the Mexican market in the wake of AT&T’s advent, the effort to seriously address its network concerns is an indicator that, at least for now, Telefónica is staying put.