KSA’s Zain tops video game performance charts, report finds

video game performance

Video games have become a benchmark for success for many broadband providers far and wide, as the gaming industry looks to continue its meteoric rise in popularity across all channels.

According to Amsterdam-based games and esports data company Newzoo, during 2021, the market will generate revenues of $175.8 billion, a small year-on-year decline of -1.1 percent.

By the end of the year, there will be 2.9 billion players worldwide.

With that in mind, telecoms provider Zain topped the list of Saudi telcos based on their video game performance for Q1 of 2021, according to a recent report by the Kingdom’s Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC).

The report revealed that Zain outperformed Mobily, Saudi Telecom Company (STC), and Integrated Telcom (ITC) with lower latency in four of the five most popular games in Saudi Arabia: Fortnite, FIFA 21, Apex Legends, and Dota 2.

The report is part of CITC’s recent framework to promote healthy competition among telecom operators to provide the best experience for gamers, raise the level of transparency in the market, and provide investors and the public with key data and indicators on the sector’s video game performance.

In the popular game Fortnite, Zain scored an average response time of 18 milliseconds. This compared favorably with STC at 20 milliseconds, Mobily at 22 milliseconds, and ITC at 24 milliseconds, for a total national average of 33 milliseconds.

Football video game FIFA was also tested by the report, with Zain ending in first place among operators with an average response time of 13 milliseconds, followed by STC at 20 milliseconds and Mobily at 23 milliseconds.

Zain also outperformed other service providers in the average response time for the games Apex Legends shooter battle royale game and Dota 2, after recording average response times of 13 milliseconds and 20 milliseconds, respectively.

As for online battle arena game League of Legends, similar to the previous quarter, performance remained relatively low across the spectrum of operators, with Mobily and Zain topping the list with an average response time of 81 milliseconds, followed by STC at 86 milliseconds, and Integrated Telecom at 89 milliseconds.

The Q1 2021 Game Mode report also unveils valuable insights on the overall latency performance of telecom companies within fixed, mobile and 5G networks. ITC led the fastest fixed networks average latency category with 10 milliseconds, Mobily led the mobile networks average latency category with 32 milliseconds and Zain led the fastest 5G average network latency category with 23 milliseconds.

CITC’s Game Mode initiative includes quarterly reports that compare response times among service providers across some of the most popular video games in the Kingdom. In addition, the initiative includes an award for the internet service provider with the best response time for video gaming, a key indicator of the network’s performance.