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According to OpenSignal’s 2018 State of Mobile Networks report, T-Mobile has been crowned the top wireless network in the U.S.
The uncarrier blew past Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint in five out of six major metric tests, besting the competition on 4G download speed, 3G download speed, overall download speed, 3G latency, and 4G availability. The only metric T-Mobile didn’t win was 4G latency; AT&T just beat it by a hair.
It is to be mentioned that T-Mobile was locked in a tie with Verizon for top mobile carrier this time last year, but now it’s taken the lead. And it was all thanks to the kneecapping Verizon and AT&T gave themselves after re-introducing unlimited plans early last year.
The fifth OpenSignal state of mobile networks report took into account about 6 billion measurements from 237,213 U.S. smartphone users, sampled between Oct. 1 to Dec. 30 of 2017 (Q4).
Compared to a year ago, when T-Mobile and Verizon were neck and neck for 4G LTE download speed, 16.65 Mbps and 16.89 Mbps, respectively, T-Mobile pulled ahead with an average download speed of 19.42 Mbps compared to 17.77 Mbps on Verizon.
Two megabits per second may not seem like much of a lead, but it could mean the difference between successfully downloading a video or not.
AT&T and Sprint ate dust, coming in third and fourth place, with 13.27 Mbps and 12.02 Mbps downloads, respectively.
OpenSignal attributes T-Mobile’s lead to Verizon and AT&T’s reintroduction of unlimited plans last year.
T-Mobile’s network had average download speeds of 19.42 Mbps compared to 17.77 Mbps on Verizon.
Overall, T-Mobile offers the fastest download speed of the major four networks. With both 3G and 4G LTE in play, T-Mobile’s network clocked in at 18.31 Mbps, Verizon at 16.49 Mbps, AT&T at 11.86 Mbps, and Sprint at 10.24 Mbps.
On 4G availability, T-Mobile edges out Verizon with a 93.14 percent rating, compared to 92.72 percent. AT&T scores 87.07 percent and Sprint scored 85.66 percent.
The only test T-Mobile didn’t win was for 4G latency; AT&T won this one, but only by a hair. T-Mobile beat the other carriers on the 3G latency test, but not 4G.
T-Mobile’s the fastest 4G LTE network in the U.S. for now, but that doesn’t mean Verizon and the rest of the gang can’t catch up.
As OpenSignal’s report reveals, Verizon and AT&T’s download speeds dipped because of the return of the unlimited plans, but started to show signs of rebounding by Q4 of 2017. With more network investments in advanced 4G LTE and upcoming 5G infrastructure, they could catch up.