There is a new speed king among the four major carriers. Open Signal published its annual test of carrier performance, and T-Mobile came out on top, beating out Verizon.
To acquire the data, Open Signal analyzed 5.9 billion measurements of network performance for availability and speed using 237,213 mobile devices.
For the past decade, Verizon has been the fastest network, but T-Mobile made some big strides in 2017 that helped it topple the red giant. Of Open Signal’s six awards, T-Mobile won five for 4G availability, 4G download speeds, 3G download speeds, 3G latency and overall download speeds. The lone category it lost was 4G latency; AT&T won the category.
In the fourth quarter of 2017, T-Mobile’s 4G average speeds reached a new high of 19.4Mbps, handily topping Verizon’s 17.8Mbps average. AT&T and Sprint came in well behind with 13.3Mbps and 12Mbps respectively.
Verizon and AT&T had a tough 2017 due in part to the re-introduction of unlimited data. This bogged down their network, reducing speeds precipitously. Verizon was able to recover by the end of the year, with its speeds reaching the same average they were at before the unlimited data plan was enacted. AT&T also bounced back, but it wasn’t to the same degree.
Coming in last place in every category was Sprint, but don’t feel too bad for the carrier, because it saw the biggest gains of any network speeds. Its average 4G speeds rose an impressive 33-percent up to 12Mbps.