Facebook, Ericsson and dtac combine user/network KPIs to boost app performance

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Facebook, Ericsson and Thailand’s Total Access Communication (dtac) have joined forces to measure and improve the user app experience on dtac’s network.

Using a methodology developed by Ericsson and Facebook, typical Facebook interactions were triggered from Facebook test accounts and measured on different mobile test devices in central Bangkok. After adjustments to the dtac network, results showed major improvements to the Facebook app experience, such as 60% improvement in Facebook uploads and downloads time.

In Thailand, almost half of smartphone users access social media on a daily basis, according to Ericsson’s June, 2016 Mobility Report, and Facebook is among the most commonly used social media app in the country. More than half of dtac’s 25 million subscribers are data users and Facebook is the most commonly accessed app on the network.

The success of the study meant that Facebook users were not only able to get content from their friends faster, but could also share their experiences within a quicker time period. In addition, Facebook users could be served from the same mobile network node, without having to build additional infrastructure and hardware. This provides benefits to operators like dtac, in terms of delivering a superior customer experience through an optimized network, said Nadine Allen, Head of Ericsson Thailand.

“The resultant whitepaper [PDF] detailing the methodology and findings from the project provides operators and developers a deeper understanding on many network variables that can impact user adoption, which is particularly critical as we work to connect the unconnected to the internet,” Allen said.


Dtac CTO Prathet Tankuranun, said, “We have planned to invest in network development and expansion. We would rather give our customers a better experience in using our service than make up some numbers on speed test apps and then forget all users’ needs.”

“Our goal is to bring affordable internet access and connectivity to the two-thirds of the world that don’t have it. As part of this effort, we work with operators and our partners to help optimize their networks to provide a more robust experience on the Facebook app and other services,” said Markku Makelainen, Director of Global Operator Partnerships, Facebook. “We are excited to share learnings from our work with Ericsson and dtac in the hopes that it may help others enhance mobile networks around the world.”

Ericsson said the measurements started in mid-2015, where typical Facebook interactions were triggered from Facebook test accounts and measured on different mobile test devices in central Bangkok; an area chosen for its very high traffic load, due to a high number of data subscribers. The partners then correlated user-centric KPIs from the Facebook application with network performance KPIs, in a way that made it possible to understand the perceived user experience in various network conditions. Adjustments were then made to the dtac network to optimize network resources for target improvements.

Select results:

  • 13-34% improvement in app experience during ‘busy hour’
  • 54% improvement in time-to-content
  • 63% improvement in time-to-share
  • 60+% improvement in Facebook upload and download time.

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