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NCC’s KPIs permit just one dropped call out of 100 calls – Danbatta

Drop call has been the subject of several network performance studies and a major contributor to service optimization in a well-established cellular network.

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EVC of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta

Technically speaking, one of the important parameters as a determinant of Quality of Service (QoS) of a cellular network system is the drop call rate.

Dropped call rate is defined as the rate of calls which end due to technical reasons and its probability as drop- call probability which the regulators and monitor agents used to provide a measure of performance for failed calls in progress.

Today, a number of cellular network subscribers are grappling with the issue of frequent dropped call hence the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) must maintain the regulatory requirements which require only one drop call rate out of 100 (1:100 ratio).

The Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, reiterated this while speaking to ICT reports in Lagos recently.

Drop call has been the subject of several network performance studies and a major contributor to service optimization in a well-established cellular network.

The objective of the parameter is to provide the subscribers with an expectation of how successful a cellular network will be at retaining the signal throughout the whole duration of call.

TechEconomy.ng’s investigations show there are many reasons that may contribute to the drop calls in mobile network.

Chief among reasons are physical problems such as lack of radio coverage, radio interference between different subscribers, imperfections in the functioning of the network, overload of the different elements of the network.

In other words, service quality will have direct influence on the customer experience and satisfaction with the service provided by the network operator.

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During network monitoring the quality of service of the network, the dropped call rate is usually included as a key performance indicator by the NCC.

Speaking on this issue, Danbatta said, “We have Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) characterizing Quality of Service; about seven of them.

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“We try as much as possible to ensure that the stipulations of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) are respected with regards the set parameters.

“We said that out of 100 calls, only one is allowed to be dropped. That is the irreducible minimum for drop calls.

“There are other parameters like the call success rate which we said only two calls out of 100 attempts should/may not be successful. When the KPIs were introduced they were given to the Mobile Number Operators (MNOs) at the point of assignment of licenses. They were told in clear terms that we intend to enforce these KPIs.

“We have a way to monitor them and ensure they adhere to the guidelines; meaning that we have the capacity to measure the KPIs including others that I did not state now.

“But primarily, the two KPIs I have spoken about are what we can be able to monitor throughout the country; States, FCT and local governments.

“So, in the event we discover any MNO not meeting these important stipulated KPIs we draw their attention to it: Like telling them, your quality of service is below the acceptable standard and you must do something about it to address the important regulatory observations.

“If we notice failure to address the regulatory directive, then we take action by writing. At times, we resort to the last option which is sanction.

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“But issues around Quality of Service vary from one location to another. Where you have clear access gaps; meaning communication (mobile network) service is not accessible, especially in areas that are underserved or unserved, the Quality of Service abounds to be below acceptable standards. But in areas where telecommunication services are fully deployed you will find the quality of service functional and not below acceptable minimum.

“Whereas we are insisting on adherence to this important rate; that is the call drop rate, at the same time, we are mindful of the fact of what ought to be done in areas that are underserved or unserved clusters which are mostly areas that lack economic viability. Therefore, you find infrastructure not deployed in those places”, he said.

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