Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has rejected the Cellular Mobile Operators (CMOs)’ demand for a moratorium on quality of services (QoS), saying it will degrade the network, quality of services, and user experience, official sources informed ProPakistani.
The Authority stated that in the context of challenges faced by the operators in relation to non-availability of the equipment refuge instead of network optimization, provision of fuel at sites for power backups, etc in order to improve KPIs.
CMOs had demanded a moratorium on quality-of-service, roll-out obligations, a moratorium on Universal Service Fund (USF), and an R&D fund reduction from two percent to one percent for a one-year duration and floor price uplift mechanism of voice and data to optimize base price.
The Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication asked PTA to provide a response on the issues and furnish legal procedures as per the rules.
Sources added that the Authority responded that one of its primary functions as per Section 4(d) of the Pakistan Telecommunication Re-organization Act, 1996, is to promote the availability of a wide range of high-quality, efficient, cost-effective, and competitive telecommunication services throughout Pakistan.
Consequently NGMS licenses and Cellular Mobile Network Quality of Service (QoS) Regulations 2021, contain the minimum target of QoS Standards pertaining to Voice and Mobile Broadband for compliance at all times by mobile operators.
The Authority responded that it has already provided facilitation/relaxation in connection with some of the QoS parameters which include
- Call Setup Time has been relaxed from 6.5 Seconds to 7.5 Seconds to address the additional setup time required in Circuit Switched Fall Back (CSFB) scenario
- The minimum target of User Data Throughput is being improved from 2Mbps to 4Mbps for 40 and 256Kbps to 1Mbps for 30 in a phased manner-(a) Within a period of two years in Pakistan (b) Within a period of three years for 3G and four years for 4G in AJK & GB
- 3G Mobile Broadband is not tested where 4G Mobile Broadband is being provided
- The testing mode of End-to-End Speech Quality/Mean Opinion Score has been limited to Narrowband only, in AJK 8 GB for a period of two years i.e. upto 31st March 2024.
PTA conducts a regular survey to ensure Quality of Service is maintained by all the CMOs. Cellular operators are generally fulfilling QoS standards in relation to NGMS services whereas voice KPIs have serious issues. Recent licenses issued to CMOs have obligation to provide a 4 Mbps average throughput for data services which is required to be completed by March 2024.
Generally, all operators are fulfilling the same, however, voice KPIs which were not a new introduction and are followed in all previous licenses as well are not being met.
Thus in the context of challenges faced by the operators in relation to the non-availability of the equipment refuge instead of network optimization, provision of fuel at sites for power backups, etc in order to improve KPIs.
Moratorium on QoS is not supported as it will degrade network QoS and user experience, PTA responded.
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