When Rakuten Mobile announced it would deploy the world’s first end-to-end fully virtualized 4G and 5G commercial mobile network in fall of 2018, there was no shortage of skeptics who believed a mobile network based on open RAN simply wouldn’t work as well as a traditional mobile network. Rakuten Mobile met that skepticism head-on, launching its 4G mobile network in April 2020, followed by its 5G mobile network just six months later.
And now, Rakuten Mobile’s performance is standing tall next to the best-in-class telcos from around the world, according to independent analysis by Opensignal.
By launching mobile service in Japan and being recognized by Opensignal for our superior network performance and availability, we are proving to the world that Open RAN is not only real, it is the future of mobile networks.Rakuten Mobile CTO Tareq Amin
Proving the skeptics wrong
Along the way, in collaboration with a global group of mobile hardware and software partners, the company has made mobile history while scaling its mobile network, aiming to achieve 96% population coverage by summer 2021. But Rakuten Mobile’s mission isn’t just to disrupt the telco industry in Japan for the benefit of customers – it aims to revolutionize how people connect around the globe, calling connectivity a human right.
Not surprisingly, this disruptive spirit and bold vision for the future of mobile is getting noticed within the industry. In March, Rakuten Mobile was recognized at the telecommunications industry’s GTI Awards 2021 for its work on building the world’s first end-to-end fully virtualized 4G and 5G commercial mobile network. And now, the company has been named a Global Leader in two categories of Opensignal’s Global Mobile Network Experience Awards 2021.
“With the commercial launches of 4G/5G service in Japan, we’ve come a long way from turning our vision of a cloud-based mobile network built on open frameworks into a reality. Being named a global leader by Opensignal is a testament to the hard work this team has done,” remarked Rakuten Mobile CTO Tareq Amin.
Rakuten Mobile, a Global Leader
Regarded as the wireless industry’s largest and most frequent analyzer of the global consumer mobile experience, Opensignal collects billions of measurements daily from more than 100 million smartphones worldwide. For its Global Network Experience Awards 2021 Report, it analyzed data provided by its users over the first 180 days of the second half of 2020 and determined Global Winners and Global Leaders across six measures of the mobile network experience: Video Experience, Games Experience, Voice App Experience, Download Speed Experience, Upload Speed Experience and 4G Availability.
Opensignal named Rakuten Mobile a Global Leader for 4G Availability, ranking the company seventh globally. 4G Availability is measured as the percentage of time that users spend connected to 4G service. Rakuten Mobile scored 98.5% 4G Availability, compared to the global average across all operators of only 86.4%.
Rakuten Mobile was also named a Global Leader for Voice App Experience, ranking fifth globally. This metric measures the quality of experience for over-the-top (OTT) voice services – mobile voice apps such as LINE, WhatsApp, Skype and Facebook Messenger, among others. Rakuten Mobile recorded a score of 82.6 points, compared to the global average of 75.8 points.
Amin added, “By launching mobile service in Japan and being recognized by Opensignal for our superior network performance and availability, we are proving to the world that Open RAN is not only real, it is the future of mobile networks.”
Opensignal Awards – Global Mobile Network Experience Awards 2021 based on independent analysis of mobile measurements recorded during the period July 1 – December 27, 2020. © 2021 Opensignal Limited.