Telecom regulator Trai today mooted that speed measurement apps could make details of their methodologies, approach and other nuances available in public domain to enable users to compare, understand and interpret the results from such apps. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) released a ‘white paper’ spelling out the methodology, approach and evaluation criteria for its own ‘MySpeed app’ that measures mobile data speeds of various operators through crowd sourcing method. “Since its launch, stakeholders have sought more details about the working methodology of the Trai MySpeed app. Some of them have also raised queries relating to the test results of the mobile app and network level values being reported on the analytical portal of Trai,” it said in a statement. The paper which gives a glimpse into the methodology behind the working of the MySpeed app, concluded that measuring broadband speed is “a complex process”, whose outcome depends upon both the test methodology and test conditions.
“Wide variations during the individual test of speed measurement may sometimes be observed because of network state and short time window of measurement,” Trai said. Speed measurement at an all-India level may need to be presented with smaller distributions across districts or “geographical bins” and across different times of the day instead of being represented with a single value, it added. “For comparing the results from various speed measurement app providers, all such providers need to make available complete details of their methodologies and data processing in public domain so that various stakeholders including users can better understand and interpret them,” said the white paper on Wireless Data Speed Measurement.
However, Trai officials said that such an observation was “advisory” in nature as these speed apps are not telecom licencees. The regulator further noted it had taken various initiatives to bring transparency and empowerment to consumers in the context of internet speeds. One of the initiatives includes setting the benchmarks for wireless data networks and also assessing the network performance on a periodic basis, it added.
“Expectation level of users about broadband experience has also risen justifiably,” Trai said citing deployment of Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks and changes in data consumption pattern of users.