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 Airtel, Vodafone most congested networks: TRAI

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Number of posts : 42
Age : 40
Full Name : Debayan Ghatak
Designation and Location : JTO/CMTS, Kolkata
Registration date : 2008-12-03

PostSubject: Airtel, Vodafone most congested networks: TRAI   Thu Jan 08, 2009 12:04 am

GSM operators Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Essar have the most congested telecom networks, an analysis by sector regulator Trai has revealed.

The regulator, which has been monitoring this aspect on a monthly basis has said that in as many as 129 places in the country, the congestion levels were way above the permissible limit during the quarter ended September 08. However, the overall congestion levels have come down -- this figure was as high as 526 in 2006 and for the quarter ended June 08, the networks were congested in about 134 places.

Network congestion leads to call drops and deterioration in voice quality. Besides, this is also the primary reason why consumers are forced to make repeated attempts to get through to another subscriber.

The regulator tracks this by evaluating the congestion levels at the Points of Interconnection (PoI), which are the places where mobile traffic is exchanged between the networks of different operators. Congestion level is one of the important parameters and signifies the ease by which a customer of one network is able to communicate with a customer of another network. The regulator has set a benchmark of less than 0.5% for this parameter. This means out of 200 calls between two operators only one call should face congestion problem.

"The result of the monitoring reveals that in a number of areas, the degree of congestion between the operators is alarming. Amongst the private service providers, Bharti Airtel has the largest number of POIs having Congestion (41 followed by Vodafone (22 ) and Reliance Communications and Idea (19 each). The circles most affected due to network congestion are Bihar, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Mumbai, Uttar Pradesh (West) and Himachal Pradesh," Trai said.

According to Trai, against a benchmark of less than 0.5%, in as many as 67 places, the level of congestion was more than 5% while in 42 places it is more than 10%. This implies, up to 10 out of every 100 calls do not come through or cannot be completed in these places. The worst affected is 11 places where the congestion level is more than 40%, Trai added.

Source: Economic Times
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