Patna performed best in access to and availability of 4G connection in India, a survey by mobile analytics company OpenSignal has found. The eastern city beat tech hubs and metro cities like Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Delhi.
In fact, central and eastern Indian cities—Patna, Kanpur, Allahabad, Kolkata, Bhopal and Lucknow—made it into our top ten. The survey covered 90 days from December 1, 2017, observing user experience of 4G availability in 20 of India’s largest cities.
OpenSignal also found that the disparity in 4G availability between India’s cities was getting slimmer. The difference in its 4G availability metric between top-placed Patna with 92.6% and 10th-placed Bangalore with 88.3% was 4.3 percentage points.
The report also showed major growth in 4G access in India, as users were able to connect to an LTE signal over 86% of the time, a rise of some 10 percentage points from a year earlier.
Notably, availability is different from speed. Another report on download speed of 4G connections, by OpenSignal, found Navi Mumbai at the top with 8.72 mbps. Patna was third from the bottom in the top twenty cities.
In spite of this apparent progress, India remains at the bottom when in comes to 4G. A report released in February found 4G download speed in India is the slowest across 88 countries spanning six continents. This was despite companies rolling out their 4G services networks being upgraded from slower 2G services. The OpenSignal report said, “4G networks lack the capacity to deliver connection speed much faster than 3G.”
While India performed fairly well in availability (rank 15), speed kept it bound. Part of the reason for this could be the relatively lesser amount of spectrum being dedicated to 4G. Some other reasons could be the density of networks, the congestion on them and the technology used by service providers.