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Since Switzerland already ranked at a very high level in previous years, increases are even more difficult to realise there. Swisscom again defends its top ranking – for the fifth time in a row. And for the sixth time, the Swiss market leader achieves the grade “outstanding“.
Swisscom earned the overall victory with the best results in the data and crowd categories. In the voice discipline, Sunrise leads and can once more be pleased with an “outstanding“ second place. However, the smallest provider in Switzerland, Salt, achieved a significant improvement in performance, moving much closer to its two larger competitors. All Swiss providers have also made great strides forward in their 5G rollouts – Salt most clearly.
The measurements in Switzerland took place from 7.10. to 27.10.2022. The drive test teams visited 28 cities and 19 towns, and the walk tests visited nine cities. The drive tests covered approximately 6700 km. Thus, about 2.3 million inhabitants were covered, which corresponds to about 26.3 percent of the Swiss population.
A detailed explanation of our methodology can be found here.
DRIVE TESTS AND WALK TESTS
km drive test
weeks (early May of mid-October 2022)
of built-up area covered
of population covered
Results at a Glance
Swisscom wins our test in Switzerland for the fifth time in a row. With the best results
in the data and crowd categories, top performance in the 5G rollout and the highest score in the 2022/23 network test season to date, Swisscom once again achieves the grade “outstanding“.
Sunrise can be pleased about the grade “outstanding“ even for the seventh time in a row – and also about being ahead in the voice discipline this year. Furthermore, its performance in the other test categories and in 5G expansion is also convincing.
The smallest provider, Salt, shows a clear improvement in performance in Switzerland this year and is moving closer to second-placed Sunrise in many test disciplines. The progress in its 5G expansion rollout is also clear. The next goal for Salt could also be the grade “outstanding“.
“I congratulate all the operators on their great results. Special congratulations go to the winners Deutsche Telekom, Swisscom and Magenta. Despite additional challenges, for example the rollouts during the Corona epidemic, rising energy prices and rapidly growing traffic on the networks, this is a clear confirmation that the mobile industry is doing an excellent job.”
Although data applications are continuously gaining in importance, mobile phone calls are still a core application of mobile communications. Therefore, they account for 27 percent of our rating.
Already in voice telephony via VoLTE (Voice over LTE), the competition between the three providers takes place at the highest level. Both in the big cities and in the small towns, the three competitors are more or less on a par. Only on the connecting roads do the gaps somewhat widen – although Salt is once again clearly catching up compared to the previous year. In practice, the high scores manifest themselves in success rates of 100 or almost 100 percent, short call set-up times and high voice quality.
As in the previous year, Sunrise achieves the shortest call set-up times, which are one second or even less in all test scenarios. But Swisscom and Salt also rank closely behind, and in the major cities Salt is even on a par with Sunrise.
The high success rates and speech quality scores on Swiss roads and on train journeys through Switzerland mean in practice that travellers can rely on being able to make mobile phone calls on the move almost without restriction – and in almost perfect quality. In the tests on Swiss trains, the runners-up Sunrise and Salt have once again caught up significantly compared to last year, while market leader Swisscom maintains its already impressive result from the previous year. In the overall ranking, Sunrise leads the voice discipline by one point ahead of Swisscom.
Apps, messaging, streaming and web surfing are the focus for smartphone users. The share of the data discipline was thus increased to 48 percent of the overall score.
The Swiss network operators rank also close to each other in the data discipline. This is clearly evident in the drive and walk tests carried out in large cities, where Swisscom has a razor-thin lead – but Sunrise and Salt are close on the heels of the first-placed company.
Salt manages to catch up with second-placed Sunrise more often than in the previous year. The high level of performance becomes particularly clear in the success rates of the individual data tests. Overall, Swisscom leads in this discipline, with Sunrise and Salt chasing each other for second place, depending on the respective test case.
In small towns and on connecting roads, Swisscom also defends its first place sovereignly. In these scenarios, too, it is remarkable that Salt continues to catch up – in the small towns, the gap to Sunrise is only minor, and on the roads, both providers are on a tie in the overall ranking.
All in all, the urban-rural divide in Switzerland is much less pronounced than in neighbouring countries. If one wants to complain at all at such a high level, Sunrise shows slight potential for improvement in the YouTube tests, while Salt could still improve a little in the upload and download tests in large cities and small towns.
However, all three Swiss network operators again show very good results in our new “conversational app“ test cases – i.e. in the examination of IP-based voice transmissions in corresponding apps – as well as the eGaming test aimed at short latency times. Swisscom owes its overall victory last, but not least to the widespread use of the combination of 5G NR with „4 Carrier Aggregation“ (4CA) in its network.
Data connectivity on railways
Yet another tradition: for years, Swiss providers have been showing what almost perfect mobile network coverage on trains looks like. The performance of Swisscom, in particular, is once again at the highest level this year. But it is noticeable that Sunrise in particular lags a little behind last year‘s performance in this discipline. Thus Salt also manages to overtake its competitor Sunrise in this discipline – however, also with a few points less than last year. The results here are still very good – but have lost their clear lead over the strongest operators in Austria.
The rollout of 5G is also in full swing in Switzerland. Our targeted analysis of the 5G results shows increases for all three Swiss providers compared to their values from the previous year in all examined scenarios. However, Salt is catching up particularly clearly in this respect.
In order to shed light on the progress of the strong Swiss providers in their 5G rollouts, we are again looking at the
results of the seven-second download tests from the data discipline as an example. The proportions of samples
with 5G and 5G-DSS determined in these tests are also found in a similar way in the other data tests.
The first thing that stands out are the very high data rates, which are well above 800 Mbit/s in many of the scenarios examined. The proportions with 5G have also once again increased significantly for all three providers compared to the previous year. Once again, it is noticeable that in Switzerland only Swisscom relies to a significant extent on the capacity distribution technology DSS. In total, this provider also has a high 5G coverage – even on roads and in trains. Where DSS
is used, however, this happens at the expense of data rates. It is also impressive how much Salt has increased in all scenarios compared to the previous year.
How much power reaches the customers? Swisscom also leads narrowly in crowdsourcing, closely followed by Sunrise and with a slightly larger gap by Salt.
The crowdsourcing analyses provide the same ranking as the overall ranking in Switzerland and as in the data and voice categories. They thus confirm the results of the drive and walk tests – whereby crowdsourcing also always reflects the customers‘ choice of tariff and device. Overall, Swisscom leads again with a two-point advantage over Sunrise. Salt follows in third place, five points behind Sunrise. In terms of broadband quality and time share with broadband, Sunrise ranks just ahead of Swisscom. Salt is somewhat more clearly behind the leading duo here.
In terms of coverage reach, Swisscom is again in the lead. The same applies to the examination of data rates (both passive and active) and to the evaluation of latencies.
The availability of HD voice is again a neck-and-neck race between Sunrise and Swisscom, with the former narrowly winning. At a generally high level, Sunrise leads in stability just ahead of the equally strong providers Swisscom and Salt here.
The high level of performance in Switzerland is also shown when looking at the basic performance – the ranking is a familiar one among the Swiss operators.
The chapter “reliability“ is new this year. However, it is not based on additional test points, but is more a different look at the results of the preceding chapters. The analysis is based on the fact that umlaut differentiates between “Qualifier KPIs“ (mandatory, so to speak) and “Differentiator KPIs“ (equivalent to freestyle) for all KPIs – see also the methodology description linked below. The providers who score well in the mandatory programme deliver reliable services, irrespective of any top performance they may or may not achieve in the freestyle.
While Swisscom and Sunrise were already close together in the voice and crowd ratings, they are tied regarding the achieved reliability points in these categories. Salt also follows here at only a small gap. The overall winner, Swisscom, is somewhat more distinct from the pursuing field in the data discipline, and there again especially in the walk tests carried out in large cities. In this sub-ranking,
Salt manages to draw level with Swisscom in the voice discipline and to place itself ahead of Sunrise in the data discipline. But here, too, it becomes ultimately clear that Switzerland is above the rest in terms of performance.
All values rounded to whole numbers. The internal calculation of points and percentages was done with three decimal points. The 493 maximum points achieved here are an extract from the total of 1000 points (see also methodology linked below).
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