State of Mobile Networks: Switzerland (May 2017)

In our first report on Switzerland, OpenSignal takes a close look at the trio of Salt, Sunrise and Swisscom. Drawing on more than 48 million measurements, we compared the 3G and 4G results recorded by OpenSignal's 6,144 smart device users in the country and found their mobile experience to be an excellent one.

Report Facts

48,885,422
Measurements
6,114
Test Devices
2017-02-01 - 2017-04-30
Sample Period
Switzerland
Report Location

Highlights

Swiss networks are both fast and far reaching

Switzerland's mobile subscribers certainly aren't lacking for fast, readily available 4G connections. Our users were able to find LTE signals on Salt, Sunrise and Swisscom's networks in seven of every 10 attempts, and when they did connect they had access to average speeds well over 20 Mbps.

Sunrise wins the speed crown

OpenSignal users measured one operator's 4G speeds as much faster than the others', however. Sunrise averaged LTE download speeds of 35.3 Mbps in our tests, 12 Mbps faster than its nearest rival Salt. Given its high level of 4G performance, Sunrise easily won our overall speed award with an average mobile data connection of 25.7 Mbps in our measurements.

Swisscom and Sunrise vie for 4G reach bragging rights

In our 4G availability category, two of our three operators stood out. Sunrise and Swisscom tied for our LTE availability award as OpenSignal users were able to connect to their 4G networks more than 76% of the time.

Swisscom excels in network responsiveness

Both our prizes for network reaction time went to Swisscom as we measured latencies on its 3G and 4G networks far lower than its competitors'.

Awards Table

Download Speed: 4G Download Speed: 3G Download Speed: Overall Latency: 4G Latency: 3G Availability: 4G

Salt

medal

Sunrise

medal medal medal medal

Swisscom

medal medal medal medal

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Performance by Metric

Availability: 4G

This metric shows the proportion of time OpenSignal users have an LTE connection available to them on each operator’s network. It's a measure of how often users can access a 4G network rather than a measure of geographic or population coverage.

Download Speed: 4G

This metric shows the average download speed for each operator on LTE connections as measured by OpenSignal users.

Download Speed: 3G

This metric shows the average download speed for each operator on 3G connections as measured by OpenSignal users.

Download Speed: Overall

This metric shows the average download speed experienced by OpenSignal users across all of an operator's 3G and 4G networks. Overall speed doesn't just factor in 3G and LTE speeds, but also the availability of each network technology. Operators with lower LTE availability tend to have lower overall speeds because their customers spend more time connected to slower 3G networks.

Latency: 4G

This metric shows the average latency for each operator on LTE connections as measured by OpenSignal users. Latency, measured in milliseconds, is the delay data experiences as it makes a round trip through the network. A lower score in this metric is a sign of a more responsive network.

Latency: 3G

This metric shows the average latency for each operator on 3G connections as measured by OpenSignal users. Latency, measured in milliseconds, is the delay data experiences as it makes a round trip through the network. A lower score in this metric is a sign of a more responsive network.

Analysis

There's a lot to like about the mobile data services of Switzerland's top operators: fast speeds, highly accessible LTE signals and quick network response times. In our first look at the Swiss Confederation, OpenSignal examined 48.9 million datapoints collected by 6,114 smartphone users between Feb. 1 and April 30, 2017. Using that data we compared the mobile data performance of Switzerland's three nationwide operators: Salt, Sunrise Communications and Swisscom.

The first metric we looked at was 4G availability, which is a measure of how often our testers were able to connect to an LTE signal on each operator's networks. Sunrise and Swisscom were statistically tied for first place in our rankings with 4G availability scores greater than 76%, meaning our users were able to latch on Sunrise and Swisscom LTE connections in three out of every four attempts. Though Salt came in last in our three-way race, it could still lay claim to a decent availability score. Our users were able to connect to its LTE network nearly 70% of the time.

We found an undisputed 4G speed winner in our measurements. Sunrise delivered an average LTE download connection of 35.3 Mbps, results that stand among the fastest in the world. But Salt and Swisscom were by no means slow. They averaged 23.3 Mbps and 20.7 Mbps in our speed tests respectively, both well above the global LTE download average of 17.4 Mbps as measured in OpenSignal's last State of LTE report.

Our 3G tests, however, yielded much closer results. All three operators demonstrated good HSPA speeds, averaging download connections of 5.7 Mbps or greater in our measurements, but given only a difference 500 kbps separated the field, the trio were statistically tied for the top spot in our rankings.

Our last speed metric, overall speed, measures the typical download connection experienced by OpenSignal users across an operator's mobile data networks, taking into account not just 3G and 4G speeds but the availability of each network. Given the lightening fast speeds we measured on its 4G network and its impressive 4G availability, Sunrise won our overall speed award easily with an average of 25.7 Mbps, 8 Mbps faster than the results of its nearest rival.

The final category we examined was latency, which is a measure of how quickly data makes an end-to-end round trip through a network. Latency, measured in milliseconds, is a gauge of a network's reaction time. The lower the latency the more responsive real-time communications apps and web browsing will be. Again, no operator underperformed when it came to racking up good response time scores, but Swisscom stood out from the pack. We measured 3G latency of 47.4ms on its HSPA network and 4G latency of 30.9ms on its LTE network.

Our Methodology

OpenSignal data is collected from consumer smartphones and recorded under conditions of normal usage. As opposed to drive-test data, which attempts to simulate what a user might experience by using the same devices to measure network performance in a small number of locations, we take our measurements from millions of smartphones owned by regular people who have downloaded OpenSignal’s apps.

Those measurements are taken wherever users happen to be, whether indoors or out, in a city or in the countryside, representing a mobile data service the way users experience it. We continually adapt our methodology to best represent the changing experience of consumers on mobile networks and therefore comparisons of the results to past reports should be considered indicative only. For more information on how we collect and analyze our data see our methodology page.

For this particular report, 48,885,422 datapoints were collected from 6,114 users during the period: 2017-02-01 - 2017-04-30.

All data has been collected from users of the OpenSignal mobile app for Android or iOS.

For every metric we've calculated statistical confidence intervals and plotted them on all of the graphs. When confidence intervals overlap for a certain metric, our measured results are too close to declare a winner in a particular category. In those cases, we show a statistical draw. For this reason, some metrics have multiple operator winners.

©2017 OpenSignal, Inc. All rights reserved.

OpenSignal, Inc retains ownership of this report including all intellectual property rights, data, content, graphs & analysis. Reports produced by OpenSignal, Inc may not be quoted, reproduced, distributed, published for any commercial purpose (including use in advertisements or other promotional content) without prior written consent.

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