Global 4G Deployment: France is seeking its place between rates and coverage

Globally, France ranks 61st in terms of 4G coverage and 22nd in terms of flows, in particular because of Free Mobile. South Korea ranks first in coverage while it is Singapore that manages to rank first.

Quarterly OpenSignal published a study on the state of 4G in the world, on the cover as the flow. The test protocol is fairly simple since the measures are based on data retrieved by the Android and iOS app OpenSignal measuring at regular intervals if the smartphone captures a 4G network and if so, the flow for download.

The website states that 357,924 devices were used to this observatory, to provide a fairly reliable picture of the cover and flows. Say at once that the coverage figures do not reflect the coverage, but the connection time in the 4G operator network, which allows to mix somehow territorial coverage and coverage population.

A very uneven coverage

In the game of coverage is South Korea which is well ahead with 97% coverage of the population, against 90% for Japan, which ranks second. We then find Hong Kong with 86%, Kuwait 85% and the Netherlands to 84% in fifth position. The US ranks 7th with 81%, but there is a wide disparity between operators: 87% against 70% for Verizon to Sprint. We find France at the 61st place with 51%. This is actually Free Mobile that brings down the score with a score of 32% against 63% for Bouygues Telecom, Orange and 61% to 58% for SFR. Without Free, France would have been able to position around 35th place.

France is well located in terms of rates

For flow rates, it is Singapore that dominates the game with 37 Mbps on average, against 29 Mbps for New Zealand, 28 Mbps for Hungary and Israel and finally to 27 Mbps South Korea. The worst countries are struggling to reach 3 Mbps on their 4G network and France up to the top of the table with an average of 18 Mbps. In detail, Free Mobile is leading with 24 Mbps followed by Orange to 19 Mbps to 16 Mbps Bouygues and SFR finally to 10 Mbps. Fairly similar numbers of what had identified nPerf and 4GMark in 2015.

Fastest 4G as Wi-Fi

The classification ends with a surprising comparison, but interesting: the average flows of 3G connections and 4G cope with Wi-Fi connections This subject had already been addressed by a previous study that the Wi-Fi was sometimes faster than. 3G / 4G cellular network. According OpenSignal, the average speed 4G now reached 13.5 Mbps against 3.5 Mbps 3G and … 6 Mbps Wi-Fi. 4G is, on average, faster than Wi-Fi networks. An information not so surprising since the majority of home Wi-Fi networks are designed around box poorly performing ISP in the field of wireless transmission.

4G WiFi and 3G cards Speedtest