Mtalk integrates into the call view a connection quality indicator in order to monitor, in real time, the performance of the underlying network connection as it is measured by app
Usually there is no immediate relationship between the level of network signal (WiFi or 3G) as shown by device and the performance of the network itself (as measured by the indicator), so there could be poor network performance also in case of a strong signal. This can occur for several reasons, among which:
- Reduced capacity of the network: some network-intensive applications, for example, may saturate the network (eg. file download by another user on the same WiFi network); on the other hand a mobile data connection (3G) has fluctuating performances up to no traffic at all for short period of time; this is very limiting for VoIP traffic. The end result being a poor connection expecially in the uplink (from the device to the network).
- Radio interference: it is important to check that your WiFi Access Point uses a radio channel as "clean" as possible: it should not overlap with that of nearby Wi-Fi networks. If your Access Point model does not operate in automatic channel selection mode, you may use any free smartphone apps that analyze the WiFi environment to determine the most appropriate radio channel to be configured on the the access point in order to minimize interference.
Connection quality indicator shows critical network conditions using either low levels bars or a exclamation mark icon.
If you wish to have more advanced technical information about the current network performance just tap on the quality indicator do display a panel that shows the following information:
- [Codec]: the audio codec used by current call
- [RTT]: the statistic of a parameter related to the network delay; single values greater than 100 ms mean that network delay is too high and it may affect the call quality
- [Obfuscation]: the information concerning the obfuscation algorithms applied to the current call at network layer; the obfuscation has no effect on the call quality
- [Connection]: the frequency of the events "no traffic received from the network"; each time that first number increases (dead) means that the network connection has been idle for too long without receiving packets; this phenomenon is often linked to interference issues among overlapped WiFi networks (if app uses WiFi connection)
- [Packets recv/sent Δ]: the percentage of alignment among the two streams uplink / downlink; the optimal value is zero. Negative values are the most critical as indicate that the number of received packets is less than the expected one
- [PLC]: the percentage of audio packets artificially synthesized since they do not arrive in time to play; the higher the value the worse the quality of the call as the app is not receiving packets from the network so it is forced to synthesize locally with a significant deterioration in quality [ either metallic effect or fragmented audio]