Verizon Communications Inc. is one of the four major mobile wireless carriers in the U.S., an elite group whose members boast of having the best network speeds than the other. However, all this appears to be a marketing fad, according to a report released by mobile operator analytics company OpenSignal. The report reveals that T-Mobile has the fastest 3G and 4G download speeds. So much for the claims of AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.
OpenSignal based its data on 181,927 U.S. mobile handsets installed with its app from October 1 to December 31 2015. The enormous sample revealed that the fastest 3G speeds were reported in handsets operating in T-Mobile network with an average speed of 3.5 Mbps. AT&T was second with 2.2 Mbps while Verizon and Sprint followed with appalling speeds of 0.66 Mbps and 0.64, respectively.
However, tables shifted in Verizon’s favor when it comes to 4G download speeds. T-Mobile predictably came first with an average download speed of 12.26 Mbps. Verizon came second with 11.98 Mbps. The third and fourth positions went to AT&T and Sprint with average download speeds of 7.93 Mbps and 6.56 Mbps, respectively.
Though T-Mobile was undeniably top in both 3G and 4G download speed categories, it is third in terms of 4G coverage uptime. This is the percentage of time mobile device users remain connected to the company’s 4G network.
Verizon was ranked first in terms of 4G coverage uptime with a score of 86.73 percent, while T-Mobile came second with a close 86.23 percent. The third position went to AT&T with 82.63 percent while ailing Sprint tailed at 70.05 percent.
It seems that Sprint has a lot of work cut out for it, having lost its No.3 position in terms of subscribers to T-Mobile last year. The company, which is facing liquidity problems, lost a large number of subscribers due to service disruption.
A reinvigorated T-Mobile had 58.9 million connections on its wireless networks as of August 2015, pushing Sprint to the bottom with 57.7 million connections. In terms of countrywide coverage, OpenSignal report also revealed that T-Mobile is almost catching up with AT&T.
T-Mobile should credit its rapid growth on its recent rollout of a superior transmission network with a range of 700 Megahertz. This enables cell signals to reach wider areas in rural and suburban areas and are also capable of travelling more efficiently through buildings in urban centers. This offers consumers better signal reception.
Miami and Chicago boasted having the fastest download speed, with Verizon registering speeds of 18.9 Mbps and 18.8 Mbps respectively. T-Mobile offered its fastest speed in Atlanta of an average of 16.9 Mbps, tying with Verizon.
Interestingly, the U.S. has a national average 4G download speed of 9.9 Mbps, which is far less than the international average speed of 13.5 Mbps. Still, it is among the enviable list of eight countries that have a 4G network uptime of at least 81 percent.