The shift in mobile traffic from voice-based to data-centric is creating new challenges for operators. App coverage gives them a new way of thinking about network performance and meeting subscribers’ expectations.
There are millions of apps available to smartphone users from the major marketplaces, and there is now 10 times more data traffic than voice traffic on mobile networks globally.
This data traffic is not simply web browsing. Most smartphone users have apps to help them manage their daily lives, from planning their jogging route and meeting their fitness goals to booking theater tickets and taxi cabs.
It doesn’t stop there. Smartphones and tablets are now used for everything from internet banking to streaming live entertainment. As smartphone usage increases, so does the demand for reliable, high-quality performance throughout the network.
App coverage deals with the area within a mobile network that can deliver sufficient performance to run an application at acceptable quality. For operators, it is about offering users a high probability of getting a targeted performance level, no matter where they are.
It brings together all aspects of network performance – such as radio network throughput, latency and capacity, and includes the performance of the backhaul, packet core and content delivery networks.
Monitoring, maintaining and improving the quality of user experience is a continuous process, and operators are having to adapt continually as devices, apps and network capabilities all develop in parallel, and the needs of users evolve.
A focus on app coverage enables the integration of coverage, capacity and quality into a holistic view of network performance, allowing the operator to deliver a level of service that consistently meets users’ expectations.