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T-Mobile Offers Top LTE Speeds in New Study
by Karl Bode 08:55AM Wednesday Apr 02 2014
For months T-Mobile CEO John Legere has stated that the company's LTE network upgrades would soon have it beating LTE speed leader AT&T in network speed tests, courtesy of the move to 2x10MHz channels. That didn't appear to be the case in a recent RootMetrics study, which pegged T-Mobile in third place for LTE speeds, well behind AT&T and Verizon. T-Mobile quickly complained that the RootMetrics study was using outdated data.

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Fast forward and a new study on the state of LTE deployments by OpenSignal suggests that T-Mobile offers the fastest LTE experience in the United States.

According to OpenSignal, while Verizon still has the largest and best overall LTE footprint, and Sprint has seen the biggest improvement in overall coverage, T-Mobile takes the LTE speed crown with an average speed of 11.5 Mbps.

OpenSignal's report uses real-world data crowdsourced from 103,025 users using the company's Android and iOS speedtest apps.

That said, the report goes on to note that the United States on average has been seeing a sharp decline in average LTE speeds overall -- dropping 32% to 6.5 Mbps, the second slowest global average. Even the fastest US carriers are slower than many of their international counterparts, but Sprint drags US stats down significantly with an average LTE speed of just 4.3 Mbps.

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IPPlanMan
Holy Cable Modem Batman

join:2000-09-20
Washington, DC
kudos:1

Impressive!

Go T-Mobile!

When its finally able to deploy its 700 MHz spectrum, T-Mobile's coverage will increase dramatically. It's expensive to deploy the tower density needed with high frequency spectrum. The future for T-Mobile is bright!

Majestik
World Traveler
Premium
join:2001-05-11
Tulsa, OK

1 edit

Re: Impressive!

Then you should be owning the stock. Don't have to always be a consumer. The company may pay dividends one day.
AT&T has done extremely well for me and part of the dividends will be paying all of my utility bills with tax free money at retirement.
I don't watch TV and I might have cut the cord years ago but I did invest that money into AT&T and Comcast.
--
The adventure continues...Sanctuary....

PapaMidnight

join:2009-01-13
Baltimore, MD

Re: Impressive!

Seems like a sound business decision. Well done.
grabacon9

join:2013-08-21

Re: Impressive!

A company trying to please customers? Who would of thought of that? A Stock Market getting bigger because of some company pleasing a customer? Lol.

MovieLover76

join:2009-09-11
kudos:1
I too am looking forward to T-mobile deploying it's 700Mhz spectrum.
It will make my great service even better

SlowFITL

join:2012-02-01
Mobile, AL
Reviews:
·AT&T Southeast
said by IPPlanMan:

Go T-Mobile!

When its finally able to deploy its 700 MHz spectrum, T-Mobile's coverage will increase dramatically. It's expensive to deploy the tower density needed with high frequency spectrum. The future for T-Mobile is bright!

The 700 MHz spectrum that they acquired only covers portions of the country. The spectrum in question mainly covers around major cities where T Mobile is already pretty good, so this doesn't do all that much for coverage in rural areas where they need it most.

snarf

@telepacific.net

Re: Impressive!

Looks like california will be happy with tmobile

w0g
o.O

join:2001-08-30
Springfield, OR

Re: Impressive!

after seeing that map..... I think.. T-Mobile's purchase is shit. It does not cover any part of the country that isn't in the mega cities of the most concentrated parts of the country.

I thus recommend people to abandon T-Mobile unless they live in one of those areas. because it will be some time before others see improvements. meaning the current speed you see, is what you get.

Sprint is where I see the future thanks to the 2.5GHz block of spectrum and Spark, plus the continued roll out of the 800MHz LTE network and LTE in general.
--
www.oregonstatehospital.net - CIA and state of Oregon set me up and targeted me with a microwave weapon, learn more.

dsfdafaf

@comcastbusiness.net

Re: Impressive!

Don't think 2.5 GHz will do any good in rural areas.
The 800 MHz sliver of spectrum will only provide 5x5mhz in most areas, if that. Get a couple heavy users on a particular cell, and your performance will quickly suffer. Sprint's 1900 is weak. It barely reaches 1 mile beyond the tower, on a good day.

SlowFITL

join:2012-02-01
Mobile, AL
Reviews:
·AT&T Southeast

Re: Impressive!

said by dsfdafaf :

Don't think 2.5 GHz will do any good in rural areas.
The 800 MHz sliver of spectrum will only provide 5x5mhz in most areas, if that. Get a couple heavy users on a particular cell, and your performance will quickly suffer. Sprint's 1900 is weak. It barely reaches 1 mile beyond the tower, on a good day.

Very true, however you don't need as much spectrum for rural areas. The 2.5 GHz is ideal for areas with a high population density.

MDA

join:2013-09-10
Minneapolis, MN

Fastest in my area...

Using T-Mobile, I get 28 down and 9 up on my LG G2 in Bloomington, MN. AT&T rolled out LTE in our area last year, but a friend of mine only gets like 9 down and 5 up.

Is T-Mobile actually "caring" about their network? *gasp*
why60loss

join:2012-09-20
Reviews:
·Comcast
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Wireless..
·CenturyLink
·AT&T Wireless Br..

Good job

I think this proves more than anything that hard cap data plans of the big 2 are a unneeded rip off that does not help network speed at all.

T-Mobile really needs to stay as a player in the market and I really hope sprint who is dead last on this ranking will stay far far away from T-Mobile.
existenz

join:2014-02-12
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Google Fiber

Re: Good job

The problem is Tmobile doesn't have as much LTE coverage than even Sprint - Tmobile doesn't work at some friends outside city, Sprint LTE does. I'm using over 10GB/month on Sprint, which would be costly on ATT/VZW. Would rather have 4Mbps unlimited than 100Mbps with a cap, though I tend to get 6-20M. What smartphone app needs more than 3Mbps - none.

SrsBsns

join:2001-08-30
Oklahoma City, OK

Re: Good job

said by existenz:

The problem is Tmobile doesn't have as much LTE coverage than even Sprint - Tmobile doesn't work at some friends outside city, Sprint LTE does. I'm using over 10GB/month on Sprint, which would be costly on ATT/VZW. Would rather have 4Mbps unlimited than 100Mbps with a cap, though I tend to get 6-20M. What smartphone app needs more than 3Mbps - none.

It's true that T-Mobile doesnt have much LTE coverage outside the metro but they are upgrading all 2G towers by mid 2015. They also state 50% of the upgrade will be complete by the end of this year.

»www.theverge.com/2014/3/13/55055···mid-2015

One thing to keep in mind when looking at T-mobile LTE coverage is mapping can be different from the real network experience because T-mobile also has an HSPA+ 42 network to fall back on. T-mobile's HSPA network is 2x faster than AT&T's HSPA+ 21. Ive been able to hit 20Mbit on it.

»en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_HSPA+_networks
existenz

join:2014-02-12
kudos:1

Re: Good job

Agreed with the HSPA to fall back on but that's also not very present outside cities. Sprint also continues to add at faster pace, both coverage and performance. As more Sprint users get Spark phones, the performance avgs will increase.
nonymous
Premium
join:2003-09-08
Glendale, AZ

Re: Good job

Sprint most like will not add rural coverage themselves but now is.part or NetAmerica for combined coverage which will start showing up plus roaming on some 700.
why60loss

join:2012-09-20
I would say when that 2G to 4G LTE upgrade happens that even the big two will start to feel loads of pain. Because there 2G foot print isn't all that bad and I know if it was all 4G LTE that most would like to dump AT&T/Verizon at that point.

ArkhmAsylm
Evrythng I need isn't really what I want

join:2006-02-22
Saint Paul, MN
Reviews:
·Comcast

Fastest...for now


Considering that their data points out that U.S. speeds overall are sharply dropping and the fact that LTE is still in its growing stages, wouldn't a 'fastest speed' crown just mean that a particular platform is merely underutilized at that particular time?
--
*Tap, Tap, Tap* Is this thing on?

Morac
Cat god

join:2001-08-30
Riverside, NJ
kudos:1

Measured speeds look low

I'm on AT&T and in my area I can get upwards of 40 mbps down and 15 mbps up on LTE. On average I'd say I'd get around 18 mbps down or more.

That's significantly higher than the 9.1 mbps listed for AT&T in the chart

DeadWrong23

@sbcglobal.net

Misleading results

The results do not mean anything. How many people were on T-Mobile network during this test result?
why60loss

join:2012-09-20
Reviews:
·Comcast
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Wireless..
·CenturyLink
·AT&T Wireless Br..

Re: Misleading results

said by DeadWrong23 :

The results do not mean anything. How many people were on T-Mobile network during this test result?

Sounds like some one is butt hurt about being on one of the other 3. Maybe sprint that every one was saying was going to blow all others away with speed or maybe Verizon that can do no wrong nor lose to no one on anything.

T-Mobile has 40 mill, sprint has 50 mill and the other two have 100 mill each. The fact is sprint screwed up and the other two even with limited data plans have not been able to keep speeds up.

Or are you going to tell me that 10mil more makes them go from 11 to 4 on avg or that the other two need to limit data even more.
amungus
Premium
join:2004-11-26
America
Reviews:
·Cox HSI
·KCH Cable

middle of nowhere

Yep.

VZW had LTE in the literal middle of nowhere. The only thing that sucks right now is interoperability. Nobody does LTE roaming. AT&T is supposed to allow for some of it, with some smaller carriers, but that's literally the only thing I've heard of. Kind of lame, considering "3G" roamed easily with compatible carriers (Sprint/Verizon, for example)

Honestly, I don't understand why there isn't more of a focus to make the whole system more unified. GSM, while I don't much care for its signal characteristics here (spotty places, dropped calls while sitting still with full bars, total lack of coverage in some areas.... I could go on), I do like the idea of something being more standardized.

Maybe someday it'll happen.

Until then, color me impressed with Verizon's services in massive swaths of territory where I would never have expected LTE.

scott2020

join:2008-07-20
MO

Re: middle of nowhere

I really wanted to like T Mobile, but it's only EDGE for me. EDGE means you better be on Wifi if you want to use data. It's too slow to even load weather apps. I suppose I'll need to move to the "big city" if I want T Mobile. Or, suck it up and get VZW, who has superb 700mhz LTE here in the sticks...
--
+++ATH0
itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA

Re: middle of nowhere

I'm currently testing T-Mo so I can save $$ and switch from Verizon. Yes, EDGE is slow but it's not that bad.

I was able to use Waze, Google Maps, and get e-mail while on Edge. It was a little laggy but it got the job done.

With their latest announcement of getting 50% of the 2G areas to 4G (be it HSPA+ or LTE_ I think better days are ahead.

delusion ftl

@comcast.net
Where in mo are you located?

SrsBsns

join:2001-08-30
Oklahoma City, OK

1 recommendation

said by amungus:

Yep.

VZW had LTE in the literal middle of nowhere. The only thing that sucks right now is interoperability. Nobody does LTE roaming. AT&T is supposed to allow for some of it, with some smaller carriers, but that's literally the only thing I've heard of. Kind of lame, considering "3G" roamed easily with compatible carriers (Sprint/Verizon, for example)

Honestly, I don't understand why there isn't more of a focus to make the whole system more unified. GSM, while I don't much care for its signal characteristics here (spotty places, dropped calls while sitting still with full bars, total lack of coverage in some areas.... I could go on), I do like the idea of something being more standardized.

Maybe someday it'll happen.

Until then, color me impressed with Verizon's services in massive swaths of territory where I would never have expected LTE.

LTE roaming is incoming via Sprint and T-Mobile with rural carriers to bolster coverage.

»www.fiercewireless.com/story/rep···14-03-26

Sprint has had the agreements in place since last year

»www.fiercewireless.com/tech/stor···13-09-27

Competition is a good thing (sorry for all the Fierce links)
amungus
Premium
join:2004-11-26
America

Re: middle of nowhere

Thanks for the links - I did not know Sprint had LTE agreements with T-Mobile.

Competition is indeed a good thing!
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
LTEiRA is sort of roaming... key word sort of, since they basically built a Verizon network to Verizon's specs...
rayeger

join:2003-07-05
Lakeland, FL

Switched from VZW to Tmobile

Wow, what a difference, where Tmobile has LTE service, the speed is unbelievable, but coverage wise, really REALY bad!!!! Just made a trip from Florida back to Ohio and the majority of the trip was on EDGE or less. Even when roaming on ATT in West Viriginia, which showed 4G the entire time, data speeds were .08 down, and .08 up, so Im guessing that it was somehow throttled, nice job Tmobile, if you want to throttle roaming, I can understand, but to restrict it to that low of a speed, that's nuts.

SysOp

join:2001-04-18
Douglasville, GA
Reviews:
·MetroPCS

4 edits

Metropcs/T-Mobile unthrottled unlimited

 
 
After reading good things about the new T-Mobile LTE network, I wanted to try out their unlimited unthrottled plan and put it to the test. Went with MetroPCS because of a good deal on an LTE phone; free after MIR.

Quickly found out tethering is officially blocked on $60 plan. Suprise! It's only when you try to activate the hotspot on the phone do you find out it's blocked. I kinda knew there had to be a catch and actually not even mad considering I'll be using the $40 unlimited or the Ptel $35 unlimited anyways.

If I can stay inside their coverage area and get 256k or better after throttle the low latency should prove for some what of a usable web experiance on the cheap.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Useless metric

Only testing LTE is a useless metric, since more often than not, T-Mobile's horrible network will be EDGE or GPRS while AT&T and Verizon are offering LTE. The better test would be actual speeds in a variety of locations. While T-Mobile is getting 50kbps on EDGE, AT&T and Verizon will be pumping out LTE speeds.

I don't doubt that T-Mobile's LTE is technically faster, as the rootmetrics data is pretty useless too, but that speed means jack **** when you have EDGE or GPRS in most of their coverage areas.

gwhall007

join:2001-11-12
Niles, MI

1 edit

Still a new network

Keep in mind that T-Mobile is still new to LTE. They can't have that many customers on that network yet. Let's all think back to when AT&T first started launching LTE - they were killing Verizon in speed tests. Why? Because AT&T's network at the time had a fairly low number of users. Once the users on LTE ramped up, speeds slowed down. This isn't rocket science, guys.

I do like that T-Mobile is deploying a large amount of bandwidth right off the bat. Those 2x10 channels will provide them lots of room for growth before speeds inevitably slow down, just like the other carriers.

I think it also needs to be pointed out again that these tests are really worthless anyway, when shown as an aggregate of customer tests taken all over the country. There are just too many variables to consider. As everyone knows, and has been pointed out in the comments here, your results may - and probably will - vary, due to myriad factors - location, time of day, device characteristics or issues, etc. The bottom line is this: the only speed tests that matter are the ones you take yourself, in the places you use your phone. This same rule applies to all mobile service - signal strength, # of dropped calls, percent of calls completed on first attempt, etc. Just because I may get terrific service from AT&T in my location, doesn't mean Joe Shmo in BFE will have the same experience. Take these test results for what they are - a very, very rough estimation of a given carrier's network quality.