Market Overview

GWS Report: Mixed Results for Mobile Network Performance in Times Square on New Year's Eve


Global Wireless Solutions Debuts Event-o-Meter, a Barometer of Mobile
Network Performance at Historic and National Events

As the wet throngs packed into Times Square to join the New Year's Eve
festivities Monday night, Global
Wireless Solutions
(GWS) network testing specialists were on the
ground and in the action to see how well the mobile networks responded
to the millions of social uploads and calls made around midnight to ring
in the new year.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

GWS Unveils its Event-o-Meter for Mobile Network Performance at NYE 2018 in Times Square (Graphic: B ...

GWS Unveils its Event-o-Meter for Mobile Network Performance at NYE 2018 in Times Square (Graphic: Business Wire)

The verdict: "Networks were working hard to handle all the traffic, kind
of like getting through the Holland Tunnel at rush hour," said Dr. Paul
Carter, CEO and founder of Global Wireless Solutions. "Even though
providers took extra steps, people most likely experienced some delay in
connecting with friends and family when the clock struck midnight."

This report marks the debut of the GWS "Event-o-Meter," a measure of
network performance at historic and national events and a barometer for
how American consumers experience wireless connectivity when networks
are trying to accommodate heavy traffic. GWS Event-o-Meter is based on
the company's OneScore evaluation process, a measurement of overall
performance that takes into account voice, data, video, coverage and
reliability metrics as well as customer experience.

Delivering on consumer expectations for mobile communications is what
drives the wireless industry. "The challenge for operators is to provide
sufficient network capacity to meet increasing data demand, regardless
of the venue or user activity," said Bill Ho, principal analyst at 556
Ventures. "GWS' technically rigorous testing methodology enables them to
evaluate network performance at any location or event as it relates to
how real consumers use their network."

Event-o-Meter NYE at Times Square 2019: Findings

The OneScore for New Year's Eve in Times Square from 5 p.m. ET to 2 a.m.
was 77 out of 100.

By way of comparison, the 2018 Mobile World Congress in Los Angeles had
a OneScore of 89, Donald Trump's 2017 presidential inauguration ranked
at 75 and the 2018 Boston Marathon scored 86.

GWS testing specialists experienced the following before, during and
after the ball dropped:

  • Nearly 100 percent of calls made on New Year's Eve in Times Square
    were completed successfully
  • Data-related tasks, like web browsing and uploading posts to social
    media, had normal success rates (in the high 90 percent range) even if
    they took longer to complete
  • Video uploads took about 10 seconds earlier in the evening but slowed
    to 16 seconds by midnight
  • Photos and selfie uploads took about five seconds leading up to
    midnight but nine seconds when the ball dropped
  • Overall reliability of the network was solid and unchanged throughout
  • Network performance was back to normal by 1 a.m. ET

Network carriers deployed advanced features to improve performance,
including LTE 4CA (carrier aggregation of four channels for the fastest
4G available), higher-order modulation like 256QAM, voice over LTE
(VoLTE) calls, and increased use of LTE multiplexing techniques (i.e.,
multiple-input and multiple-output) like 2x2 and 4x4 MIMO.

"We took our new GWS Event-o-Meter to the streets in Times Square this
New Year's Eve to see how the network stacks up in this ‘acid test' for
performance," added Dr. Carter. "Americans count on wireless performance
when and where they need it, and New Year's Eve is no exception. We must
be able to post photos, download videos and place phone calls. Overall,
the networks made a good effort to accommodate the incredibly high
traffic at one of the busiest times and spots in the country."


GWS had a total of three data collection teams in New York City on New
Year's Eve. Each team used SwissQual QualiPoc on Samsung Galaxy S9
collection devices to measure the performance of the Tier 1 mobile
networks. Nearly 13,000 voice and data samples were collected and
compiled into a single OneScore, resulting in a combined overall event
experience measurement on a scale from 0-100. New Year's Eve data
collection started at Monday, December 31, 2018 at 5:00 p.m. ET and
concluded on Tuesday, January 1, 2019 at 2 a.m.

About Global Wireless Solutions, Inc.

Founded in 1996 and headquartered in Dulles, Virginia, Global Wireless
Solutions has set the industry standard for network benchmarking,
analysis and testing. Its proprietary OneScore network ranking combines
high-level network testing data with real-world network usage scenarios
to make the results of testing relatable and easy to understand. Working
with some of the world's largest wireless network providers, GWS offers
high-quality network data and engineering analysis through a suite of
benchmarking products, services and OneMeasure diagnostic apps that
include drive, venue and in-building testing. At last count, GWS has
driven 12 million data collection miles for its customers. For more
information, visit
and follow us on Twitter at @gwsolutionsinc.

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