Sprint and T-Mobile Make Improvements in 2014, but Continue to Trail Verizon and AT&T in Performance

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 10, 2015.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    The latest report from network monitoring firm RootMetrics shows that both Sprint and T-Mobile made improvements in overall performance during the second half of 2014. Verizon was ranked as the top carrier in the United States for the third consecutive study, trailed by AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, based on several categories: speed, reliability, call performance, text performance and data performance.

    The new data reveals Sprint closed out the second half of 2014 on a high note with significant improvements in network speed, reliability and call performance. While it continues to trail market leaders Verizon and AT&T, Sprint's network enhancements were enough for it to surpass T-Mobile in the United States and on a state-by-state level during the final six months of the year.
    Despite ranking last in the United States and on a state-by-state level, T-Mobile continued to make improvements in large metro areas, with fewer dropped calls, blocked calls and failed downloads. RootMetrics predicts T-Mobile could place even more pressure on leading carriers Verizon and AT&T if it continues to make improvements in these regions, such as New York City, Chicago, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Houston, Seattle and Las Vegas.

    Overall, Verizon and AT&T continue to offer the best network coverage and reliability nationwide, but T-Mobile and Sprint are stepping up the competition with continued improvements. The full RootMetrics report provides a comprehensive look at all four major carriers in the United States.

    Article Link: Sprint and T-Mobile Make Improvements in 2014, but Continue to Trail Verizon and AT&T in Performance
  2. nouveau-apple macrumors 6502a

    Sep 29, 2014
  3. CEmajr macrumors 601

    Dec 18, 2012
    Charlotte, NC
    They are getting closer and closer.

    Looks like Sprint improved in call reliability a lot but data speeds remain their achilles' heel. T-Mobile has the great data speeds but of course needs to finish addressing their rural data coverage issues.
  4. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3


    Nov 26, 2007
    Huh. When I checked last year I had found charts showing AT&T edging out Verizon.
  5. DougTheImpaler macrumors 6502a

    Feb 28, 2006
    Central Illinois
    T-Mo and Sprint gotta at least offer enough data along the interstate outside of major cities to download navigation data before I consider switching back. I hate how much I give Verizon, but it's a necessary evil. I'd love to save money and give some of it to T-Mo again. But if I can't get where I'm going, I can't have the service.

    The 600MHz spectrum auction later this year will help, and so will the 700MHz they acquired from Verizon. They just need to implement it.
  6. CEmajr macrumors 601

    Dec 18, 2012
    Charlotte, NC
    Not sure what charts you were looking at. Verizon has always been in 1st place overall since they started doing the nationwide comparisons. Due to their rural coverage they win almost every state.
  7. anek007 macrumors regular

    Jul 30, 2014
    Verizon has good coverage but att has the speed.
  8. 2457282 Suspended

    Dec 6, 2012
    They are getting closer, but in the two break out charts for reliability and speed, there is still a significant gap, especially in speed. I am on AT&T and always thinking of jumping. However, they keep staying competitive (not ahead of the pack like Tmob, but in the pack for sure). Given that and the speed and reliability being way better than tmob and sprint, I keep sticking with them. I never liked Verizon becasue their technology did not let me talk and surf at the same time. Finally with LTE I think that has changed, but they tend to be the most expensive of the group. So for me AT&T is the sweet spot. Not perfect, but given everything, it works the best for me.
  9. KdParker macrumors 601


    Oct 1, 2010
    Depends on where you are located. Verizon has better coverage and is faster than ATT in my area.
  10. malexandria Suspended

    Mar 25, 2009
    ATT Awful

    ATT is Awful, almost never works when I really need it to. I only get LTE about 10 or 15% of the time in the North East and usually only 2 bars and it's extremely rare that I get LTE when I'm outside of my region. I really would like to know where people live where the service is so great. I've had it for 8 yrs strictly because they at least get the bill correct every month - which is something Verizon never did (not only was Verizon awful, but they screwed me on my bill to the tune of hundreds of dollars nearly every few months). :confused:
  11. J. Jizzle macrumors regular

    Mar 30, 2013
    WHAT!? Sprint is actually beating T-Mobile in Overall Performance & Reliability??? I thought Sprint would be dead last in every category. I'm actually shocked about this.
  12. avanpelt macrumors 68030

    Jun 2, 2010
    T-Mobile ranks worse than Sprint (at least in this benchmark)? That's saying something. Legere is a charismatic guy who has some good ideas, no question about that. But his company still has a ton of work to get done and the other carriers aren't sitting still.

    Just for giggles, I went to the T-Mobile site just to take another look at their LTE coverage in my region to see if it's gotten any better. Nope. I live in Metro Atlanta; and as long as I stay within 50 miles of home, I'd pretty much always have LTE coverage with T-Mo.

    However, we usually drive to Florida a couple of times a year. Guess what? Once you leave the southern suburbs of Atlanta heading south on I-75, you lose LTE until you get to Macon (a distance of 50 miles). Then you lose it again once you leave Macon until you get to Valdosta (a distance of 120 miles).

    Put simply, T-Mobile's LTE coverage map in my region looks like a Verizon or AT&T coverage map from 1995 (i.e. you're covered near bigger cities but beyond that, forget it). According to T-Mobile's own map, more than half the state of Georgia outside of Metro Atlanta has 2G coverage on T-Mobile. Yeah.

    T-Mobile might have attractive pricing; but I'd rather pay a price premium with Verizon and have LTE 99% of the time regardless of where I go as opposed to saving $20 or $30 bucks a month for "unlimited" data on T-Mobile only to have my phone drop to 2G when I have to drive outside of a metro area. Unlimited 2G data is not even worth $20 a month, in my opinion.
  13. Fanaticalism macrumors 6502a

    Apr 16, 2013
    Verizon is cheaper than Att and has been for almost 8 months. This includes rate plans and device installments. Att just continues to charge above msrp for devices. I

    am not a happy Att customer ATM but we all have unlimited data so we stay put.
  14. nutmac macrumors 601

    Mar 30, 2004
    Agreed. T-Mobile's data coverage along widely traveled I-5 in California is atrocious, with large blocks between Sacramento and Bakersfield either without any data coverage or at best EDGE.
  15. oneMadRssn macrumors 601


    Sep 8, 2011
    New England
    I just changed carriers, and did a lot of price comparisons. For a family plan with 5 lines and needing 10-15GB of data, there was no way Verizon would be cheaper, not under any plan, program, or publicly available promotion.
  16. FoxyKaye macrumors 68000


    Jan 23, 2004
    Livermore, Terre d'Ange, Bas Lag, Gallifrey
    I generally refer to T-Mobile as the, "You Get What You Pay For, Punk!" network. But I do have a sweetheart Unlimited plan and pricing from the Nexus One days that transferred over to my iPhone. And lots of hope. So, does this mean that T-Mobile is the Obama '08 campaign of cellular providers?
  17. neuropsychguy macrumors 65816


    Sep 29, 2008
    I'm surprised too. I've used both networks and hands down T-Mobile has been way better in many locations around the country. I've known many people who've switched from Sprint (some within the past year) because of problems. T-Mobile has its limitations but they've been vastly better than Sprint. Yes, this is just anecdotal evidence but I've heard a lot along these lines.

    I use T-Mobile and deal with their limited coverage but most of the time, I get good, fast connections. Plus, my unlimited talk, text, 1GB only costs me about $21 per month. If any of the other carriers could approach that price, I'd consider switching (except for Sprint), but what I get for what I pay is unmatched.
  18. 2457282 Suspended

    Dec 6, 2012
    Not sure how you are comparing. Especially when multiple individual unlimited lines is more expensive than moving to a family share plan. If you are paying more on AT&T, you should move to a family plan. I did this a couple of years ago when the plans came out and have been very happy and saving money.
  19. bushman4 macrumors 68020

    Mar 22, 2011
    On these evaluations, it depends where you are.for reliability and data speed. So these stats don't show anything. Not even bragging rights for the companies
  20. LordBeelzebub macrumors regular

    Aug 22, 2013
    I used to have good service with ATT here in Springfield, IL. Until about 4 years ago they did something and my service was sketchky. I no longer had good enough signal strength to stream Slacker Radio, couldn't web browse on my phone, sometimes even text wouldn't send, and this is while working right down town. It was time for an upgrade so I got a new phone thinking maybe an antenna in my previous phone had issues. No such luck, same poor reception issues with the new phone.

    I got fed up paying for data I essentially couldn't use, so a year and a half ago I switch to Verizon and absolutely LOVE my service. 50Mbps down, 20Mbps up and everywhere I travel I virtually always get LTE.

    I realize coverage is different for everybody depending on where you live, but I will never go back to ATT, and T-Mobile and Sprint not even a consideration.
  21. TWSS37 macrumors 65816

    Feb 4, 2011
    This is very YMMV. I just switched from VZW to TMO and went from data speeds on VZW around 7-10 mbps, and TMO is between 35-40.
  22. CEmajr, Feb 10, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2015

    CEmajr macrumors 601

    Dec 18, 2012
    Charlotte, NC
    Not sure which coverage maps you were looking at (the green ones from 2012 perhaps?) but according to the ones on their site the area you're complaining about is pretty much all LTE. Here it is from Atlanta to Macon and Macon to Valdosta. In fact I-75 looks like a near full LTE experience from Atlanta to Miami. They've definitely improved. Nice try though...

    Attached Files:

  23. Westside guy macrumors 603

    Westside guy

    Oct 15, 2003
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    Unless you travel a lot, the overall picture doesn't matter - what matters is how they perform in the area you live.

    My experience with side by side T-Mobile and Verizon devices in the Puget sound area was Verizon's data coverage was bad in the same places T-Mobile's was bad. On the train, they would both drop in the same places. In the city, they were both good. So day to day there's no good reason for me to pay more for the same level of service.

    I do keep a Verizon network iPad around specifically for traveling. Once a year I find it useful to buy a one month plan. That's the one good thing about them - they do have at least some level of coverage even out in the boondocks.
  24. neuropsychguy macrumors 65816


    Sep 29, 2008
    I drop out of LTE a number of times on I75 in Florida. T-Mobile's coverage map is generous and doesn't necessarily represent actual service. For the most part it's okay but I've been in a number of areas of "coverage" (generally a little more rural but some were in sizable cities) and had no signal, not even for voice calls.
  25. C DM macrumors Sandy Bridge

    Oct 17, 2011
    Interesting...up until a few days ago for a period of at least a few months Verizon was offering 10 GB for just $80/month and 15 GB for $100/month, which seems to be cheaper.

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