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T-Mobile and Verizon Are Basically Tied in Network Speeds and So-Called 'Availability'

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Apr 12, 2001
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Verizon is fighting back against T-Mobile's recent attempts to steal the network spotlight as the so-called "Un-carrier," according to the results of OpenSignal's latest State of Mobile Networks report published today.


Verizon regained a statistical tie with T-Mobile in overall network speeds, with an average download speed of 14.63 Mbps versus 14.7 Mbps for T-Mobile, according to OpenSignal. The metric factors in combined 3G and LTE speeds, in addition to the availability of each network technology, which can affect overall speeds.

Meanwhile, T-Mobile came within 2 percentage points of Verizon's lead in nationwide 4G LTE availability, according to OpenSignal. The report found T-Mobile customers had an LTE connection available to them 86.6% of the time, up from 83.2% in August 2016, compared to Verizon's leading 88.2% availability.

It is important to note that OpenSignal's "availability" measurement does not reflect geographical or population-based coverage.
OpenSignal's 'Availability' measures the proportion of time users have network access. By continually measuring whether users have a connection or not we are able to extend our assessment of networks to account for what happens when users are indoors and when they are moving around. We build up a holistic, user-centric measurmement of networks that expresses how users experience them.
The two carriers won or shared every award in every category of the report, leaving AT&T and Sprint with zero accolades.


Verizon still appears to have the faster network in a number of metro areas, including Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco.
Verizon ranked highest in speed in 14 of the 36 cities we analyzed, compared to four cities for T-Mobile and one for AT&T, but in seven other metro areas the speed contest between Verizon and T-Mobile resulted in a statistical tie. In three other cities we recorded a draw between AT&T and either Verizon or T-Mobile, while in the remaining markets, we saw ties between three or more operators.
Verizon had the lowest average LTE latency, the delay data experiences as it travels between points in the network, at 59.84 ms, compared to 61.28 ms for Sprint, 61.56 ms for T-Mobile, and 65.62 ms for AT&T. T-Mobile had the lowest average 3G latency at 115.76ms, according to OpenSignal.

OpenSignal said it parsed 4.6 billion measurements collected by 169,683 smartphone users in the fourth quarter of 2016 to gauge the 3G and 4G performance of the "Big Four" networks in the United States: AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. Read the full report for the complete results and methodology.

Article Link: T-Mobile and Verizon Are Basically Tied in Network Speeds and So-Called 'Availability'
 

b11051973

macrumors 6502
Apr 8, 2006
361
386
I swtiched from Verizon to T-Mobile last fall. I bought an iPhone 7 in the process. After 2 months, I just had to get away from TM. I basically got a signal everywhere, but it was extremely weak at work. Basically meant I had 56k data speeds while at work. Phone was worthless.

Since I had a TM iPhone, I couldn't go back to Verizon, since it wasn't CDMA. So, I switched to AT&T and everything is fine.
 
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Return Zero

macrumors 6502a
Oct 2, 2013
909
2,369
Kentucky
Having been a customer of both T-Mobile and Verizon networks recently, I'll just make two notes:

Speed-wise, sure, that sounds about right. In my experience speed was nearly identical.

Coverage-wise, no way is T-Mobile anywhere that close to Verizon. If we're talking about covering just where people live, maybe they come within two population percentage points. Try talking on the phone while on a long road trip, however, and you'll quickly find that Verizon has a huge advantage in coverage. Two percentage points doesn't sound like much, but when they can hit all the cities and urban areas with a few towers and hang a lot of rural areas (where very few people live) out to dry, T-Mobile's coverage sounds way better than it actually is. That said, it is improving, but it still has a long way to go.
 
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jntdroid

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2011
399
481
Two percentage points doesn't sound like much, but when they can hit all the cities and urban areas with a few towers and hang a lot of rural areas (where very few people live) out to dry, T-Mobile's coverage sounds way better than it actually is. That said, it is improving, but it still has a long way to go.

The 2% is within the already existing coverage - so it's really a moot statistic for comparison purposes. In other words, within T-Mobile's already existing coverage, they have 86% LTE availability, and with Verizon's already existing coverage, they have 88% LTE availability...
[doublepost=1486566324][/doublepost]
Shouldn't the title be 'Basically, T-Mobile and Verizon Are Tied in Network Speeds and Availability'?

Speed yes, availability no... IMHO.
 
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fourthtunz

macrumors 65816
Jul 23, 2002
1,318
733
Maine
If it's only about connection..then maybe Verizon wins but all the other perks you get from
T-mobile more than make up for anything you get from verizon
Binge on, data stash, free wifi on planes, and all the other cool things Tmobile gives you.
Verizon just comes off as a greedy corporation.
 
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lyngo

macrumors 6502a
Sep 10, 2007
679
907
As a T-Mobile customer that came over from Verizon, the advancement that T-Mobile has made in the last three years in our area has been incredible. I've never seen the network growth like that in the area of western NY. That being said, I have Verizon on my iPad and the USA nationally is still dominated by VZW. To be honest, in my opinion only, it really doesn't even compare.

It'll be interesting to see what the final results are from the 600 spectrum auction. I, for one, am glad to be a T-Mobile customer even though they still don't have the same coverage as VZW. I'm glad I'm not paying through the nose to have service where I live. It all comes back to value and I feel like I am getting the best value for what I'm paying through T-Mobile.

- Jay
[doublepost=1486566687][/doublepost]
Bingo. It just means that their customers don't travel as much as Verizon users...

I travel everywhere, including Southern Ontario. Again, it's not as good as VZW coverage, but I don't have to pay extra when I go to Canada to use my T-Mobile service.
 
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FoxyKaye

macrumors 68000
In cities is one thing. I can't speak to that. It's the roads and interstates where the difference is clear. Verizon wins interstates and rural areas, for now.
Also, step inside any building in downtown San Francisco, and the difference between Verizon and T-Mobile will become immediately apparent. T-Mo was well and good if all I needed to do was personal calls outside and while walking, but Verizon, although I hate how much they nickel and dime their customers, actually gives me a signal where I need to do business.
 
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JungeQuex

macrumors regular
Sep 16, 2014
136
313
Interestingly enough, I was a Verizon customer in Northern Virginia for some years. I moved to a semi-rural area just south of Fort Belvoir off of US-1 (about 25 mins south of Washington, DC) and had very poor coverage. I then switched to T-Mobile and had at least 2 bars of LTE. Not great, but still better than Verizon. I was surprised that VZW had such weak service so close to the national capital region, especially considering that my "rural" area was only about a mile off of US-1.

My guess is that it had something to do with the location itself, as my house was bordered by the military post to the north, the Potomac to the East, and a Virginia state park to the south. Either way, that was my experience with Verizon vs. T-Mobile and in that case T-Mobile won out.
 
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truettray

macrumors 6502
Sep 7, 2012
386
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USA
This is why you always hear, "Competition is good for customers!" T-Mobile has been transitioning from a third-tier carrier to first class these past few years, and I'm proud to be their customer.
 
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burgman

macrumors 68020
Sep 24, 2013
2,149
1,630
Verizon.PNG
If it's only about connection..then maybe Verizon wins but all the other perks you get from
T-mobile more than make up for anything you get from verizon
Binge on, data stash, free wifi on planes, and all the other cool things Tmobile gives you.
Verizon just comes off as a greedy corporation.
Yeah get back to us when you breakdown on a rural or mountain road and your TM phone just laughs at you. we all make choices to what's important, in the same location Tmobile is 4 to 8meg down because of tower congestion, I choose better service for not much more money. Cool things... YAY :)
 
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