Maxis, Malaysia’s leading communications service provider with an “unmatched customer experience” (as the company claims), recorded the highest dropped call rate of 8.16% in Pendang, Kedah according to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).
MCMC which conducted the Extensive End-Point Service Availability Testing (EESAT) in Q3 (Jul-Sep 2013) nationwide revealed that DiGi came second and third with 8% and 7.78% dropped call rates in Laluan Jalan Utama (Sabah) from Tuaran to Kudat and Laluan Jalan Utama from Membakut to Keningau, respectively.
28 compounds totaling RM1.2 million were served to Maxis, Celcom, DiGi and U Mobile. DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd received 11 separate compounds, the highest amount among the Telcos, totaling RM480,000-00, followed by Maxis Mobile Services Sdn Bhd with nine separate compounds amounting to RM360,000-00, Celcom Axiata Berhad with seven separate compounds totaling RM310,000-00 and U Mobile Sdn Bhd was issued one compound of RM50,000-00.
The EESAT was done periodically. In Q3 last year, a total of 120 compliance measurements were conducted in various locations throughout the whole country. Compounds were served to telcos that showed more than 3% dropped call rates as stipulated in the Mandatory Standards for Quality of Service.
In terms of complaints relating to dropped calls, MCMC observed that there has been a reduction of 33.3% in Q1 (Jan-Mar 2014) compared with Q3 2013. All the telcos showed a reduction of complaints on dropped calls, except for Maxis which doubled theirs.
DiGi on the other hand managed to reduce dropped calls complaints by 89% in Q1 2014.
“We stepped-up EESAT in 2013 due to the numerous complaints and reports received from the public, NGOs and media regarding dropped calls early last year. We view complaints about telcos very seriously especially for failing to deliver to consumers the service they claimed to offer but any action taken against them must comply with due process under the law,” said MCMC Chairman, Dato’ Mohamed Sharil Tarmizi.
“This involved compliance testing and analyses thereafter, which may take time. Hence, we thank the public for their understanding and assistance in reporting issues such as this to MCMC and urge them to continue to report to their service providers on all issues relating to quality of service, particularly on dropped calls,” added Dato’ Sharil.
“We also met with the telcos’ CEOs and asked them to put more effort in improving the quality of service within a certain period of time. MCMC made it clear that it will not hesitate to take stern action against the telcos if they failed to comply,” he added. “In fact, it may be timely to start exploring on a star-rating system for telcos so that consumers may make an informed choice about the best service provider for them.”
This isn’t the first time that these Telcos are fined for dropped calls. In March last year, DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd was served four separate compounds totaling RM100,000-00, Celcom Axiata received RM60,000-00 for three separate compounds, and Maxis Mobile Services Sdn Bhd with two separate compounds amounting to RM30,000-00.
In the first half of 2012, DiGi had the highest number of dropped calls in the network compared to Celcom and Maxis.