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Verizon network the best in the states, says study from RootMetrics

Verizon network the best in the states, says study from RootMetrics
Mobile analytics firm RootMetrics drove 217,758 miles, visited 6356 indoor locations and took 4.6 million samples in an effort to determine which of the major U.S. carriers offers the best service. The testing included measurements of calls, texts and data and sought to find the most reliable and fastest pipeline. According to the study, it was a two horse race between Verizon and AT&T with T-Mobile and Sprint lagging far behind. The overall scoring placed Verizon on top (89.6 points) with AT&T close behind (86.2). Sprint (68.2) and T-Mobile (64.3) finished third and fourth respectively.

Verizon took the top spots in reliability, data, calls and text. The only category that it did not win was the one for speed. That category was won by AT&T with  a score of 88.7 compared to Big Red's 88.5. Speed was also the only category where T-Mobile surpassed Sprint.

The testing was done in the second half of last year, and you can view all of the results in the slideshow below.

source: RootMetrics via BGR

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posted on 05 Mar 2014, 12:42 7

1. SemperFiV12 (Posts: 944; Member since: 09 Nov 2010)

I left Verizon for T-Mobile in the LA area and I couldn't be happier... It all depends on the area you are in, since cell towers are REGIONAL!

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 12:45 1

3. eN16HTMAR3 (Posts: 253; Member since: 08 Oct 2013)

Yes you are correct. If you live and work in one area and get a better deal with a lesser carrier then hats off to you. Beings Im in a rural area. Verizon is the only real choice for me sadly. It works just about everywhere, but the price is insane as it always has been.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:19 4

10. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4837; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

Yes but this isn't a regional test... This is Nationwide. T-Mobile has good spots here & there but Verizon is good almost everywhere. Sh*t even in the mountains Verizon shines...

Verizon is expensive BUT you DO get what you pay for... THE BEST hands down.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:31

12. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

The only thing that I am recently unhappy about with VZW is the data speeds are not what they once were. When they first rolled out LTE, I was reliably seeing 20+ Mb/s down. Now it is more like 10+ Mb/s down and some areas are pushing 1.0 Mb/s. :-(

VZW seems to becomming a victim of their success. Time to add network capacity.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:55

24. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4837; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

Wow that sucks BIG time... I have yet to see anything like that. I am always getting good signal & GREAT speed.

This is literally the FIRST time I have EVER heard that. I am really sorry to hear that...

Just did a speed test, got 44.17 download & 8.68 upload... east coast at 3:55 p.m.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 15:22

27. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

Palo Alto, CA at around 3 pm is reliably at the 1.0 Mb/s down speed. I have mentioned it to VZW tech support on at least 3 occasions when I called in for help on another item. The response was that they were adding to their network capacity and that the slow speed should be resolved 'soon'. I have been noticing the slow speed for about the past 6 to 9 months, so I don't know how soon soon means.

The only consolation is that AT&T has similar slowdowns in the Palo Alto area, so I am stuck with the slow speed until VZW does something about it.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 08:52

49. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

Dougie, I'm sorry to hear that too! Are you near mountains? I must admit that there are certain spots in Manhattan where my data speeds slow down; usually, near midtown (between Lexington and Park in the East 50's) or when I'm slumming it down in Union Square (Union Square is a given, though, at least I have decent service down there since AT&Trite and Sprint-Less hardly have service). Anyhoot, I have noticed a marked slow down in data speeds ever since all those disgruntled Sprint, T(iny)-Mobile and AT&Trite subscribers defected to the TRUE BIG RED!! Sometimes we must be the bigger people and acknowledge that the less fortunate and deprived subscribers on other carriers should be afforded decent cell service too and, therefore, we must, in our supreme benevolence, share everything.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 16:41

32. RORYREVOLUTION (Posts: 3108; Member since: 12 Jan 2010)

That's what I miss about Verizon and AT&T, even though those data speeds are slow to you, they are 100 times better than the data speeds I have to suffer through Sprint at work. Even though I am in a LTE area, their network can't penerate through my work buildings walls and thus I am forced to "use" 3G, which half the time it doesnt even work. If I am lucky enough to get LTE to work, it goes from a decent 15-17 mbps down to a 1-2 mbps down. Of course, as soon as I walk outside, BAM full bars of LTE.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:45 3

14. genkidama20 (Posts: 52; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)

I left Verizon for T-Mo as well... but my coverage isn't as good with T-Mo. Though, the $600/year I'm saving on my family plan is well worth it. Gotta pinch pennies in this economy.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 16:04 1

28. jmonteiro829 (Posts: 186; Member since: 13 Feb 2012)

I did the same... saving dollars! With the availability with wifi these days too if you really needed to make a call there are options.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 00:40

43. kaintae (Posts: 73; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)

I understand saving money. But if you have to resort to wifi or other "options" when you need your network to work for you...are you really saving money? or are you wasting it on a service that doesn't work?

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:52

16. bigdawg23 (Posts: 449; Member since: 25 May 2011)

You are correct. I travel all over the US, however AT&T was more reliable for me. When my company mandated we get a on the corporate plan I choose VZW to go with my personal AT&T. Well after four months of Hell, I got out of my contract and moved the line to our companies AT&T plan. Now I don't have delayed TXT, calls going directly to voicemail and painfully slow data in many locations,

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:21 1

20. akki20892 (Posts: 3901; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)

At&t is on 2nd place. Close to Verizon. Not bad.
They have good network and it's not expensive. So both way good, price and network.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:26 1

21. TheRequiem (Posts: 240; Member since: 23 Mar 2012)

I honestly wish they would stop doing all these tests and putting the monopolistic duopolies on a high praise... They did these tests while all the carriers are building their new networks and Verizon is pretty much done. I wish they would just wait until they are all done. This root metrics is biased and the fact everyone else is still building their new networks totally discredits their test. T-mobile is barely half way done, give me a break.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 00:43

44. kaintae (Posts: 73; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)

It's a test of real life reliability as it currently is. Should customers wait for T-mobile to catch up to the other carriers before they decide to go to T-mobile?

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 16:12 1

30. mikelemon (Posts: 95; Member since: 21 Nov 2013)

LOL look at these t-mobile fanboys. Bbbbbbut t-mobile is the best right? Last place. You get what you pay for slow speeds and crap coverage. Even sprint(ewww) is better.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 12:42 1

2. Mxyzptlk (Posts: 13068; Member since: 21 Apr 2012)

Verizon network has gone down many times. Coverage does not equal service.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 12:46

4. eN16HTMAR3 (Posts: 253; Member since: 08 Oct 2013)

You are also correct. Verizon has went down in every major storm we had last year. Usually not for more than 24 hours, but you are correct.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:03

5. bossmt_2 (Posts: 449; Member since: 13 Oct 2009)

I'm pretty sure every carrier's network goes down at some point or another.

Overall I'm happy with my service from Verizon, just stupid expensive. Including insurance and a few other features, my plan is 215 for 3 people including taxes and fees. 700 minutes, unlimited texting 2 unlimited datas and a 2 GB plan with an 18% access discount saving me about 21 bucks a month. I'm hoping Verizon matches AT&T's 10GB 145 for 3 phones plan. Obviously insurance and taxes raises it, but pre-tax I'm still at about 40 bucks savings or so. Verizon needs to lower it's plans to keep customers or you'll soon see a mass exodus to T-Mo or AT&T.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 19:29

36. AtomicMe (Posts: 23; Member since: 03 Jul 2012)

Don't forget about the extra $20-$30 per phone on AT&T's Next Plan for their service you mentioned. That would take it well over $200 a month...

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:04

6. paulyyd (Posts: 338; Member since: 08 Jan 2011)

Love verizon, now if they brought back unlimited or even reasonable priced data plans, they would be even better. Not complaining though, I'm grandfathered in unlimited data

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:09

7. theo14461 (unregistered)

Oh, Yeah! This is the post I've been waiting for. I've had them all, T-Mobile sucks, so does Sprint. Verizon is good, but they are a total rip-off. AT&T is the best network for me.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 00:45

45. kaintae (Posts: 73; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)

I admit, i haven't tried AT&T in years. But are the prices really that different? Last I checked, when they both went to share plans, their prices were about equal.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:13

8. JunitoNH (Posts: 1798; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)

No surprise here. Sprint and TMobile are handcuffed, and AT&T has some issues with signal penetration.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 21:24

38. Gemmol (Posts: 792; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)

Signal penetration where and when you say where, tell me what year you had at&t and what phone you use, because I know as of 2012 or 2013 AT&T surpass or on same level as Verizon with better data speeds and no more drop calls

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 22:48

41. itzmando (Posts: 115; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

ATT does have penetration. Most of my co-workers have ATT some have Iphone 4S and others Galaxy S4s. They simply cannot get a good signal in the workplace. Its an old cement building so these are not old phones well maybe the 4s but the Galaxy S4 versions always have problems connecting to the network.

I have VZW and I get 3-4 4G signal strength inside and full bars outside.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 23:41

42. itzmando (Posts: 115; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

*AT&T has signal penetration problems in older concrete buildings.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:18

9. StraightEdgeNexus (Posts: 3689; Member since: 14 Feb 2014)

The first two lines sound like the network signals from verizon reach japan shores.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:30

11. AnukulVcool (unregistered)

verizon, let xperia z2 come in! , you won't regret

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:34

13. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

It isn't VZW that is keeping Sony out. If Sony doesn't build their phones with support for VZW network, there is nothing that VZW can do to lenable Sony phones to operate on the VZW network.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 13:49

15. JEverettnow (Posts: 228; Member since: 11 Mar 2013)

In before PapaSmurf aggressively defends T-Mobile based on Chicago's service

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:00

17. Federated (Posts: 261; Member since: 06 Mar 2010)

I left AT&T for T-Mobile here in Los Angeles area. I never had a problem since my switch. I'm constantly hitting 35-40mbps in my area. That's actually faster than my broadband internet. In my area T-Mobile is simply the fastest network. Obviously not applicable in the entire nation.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:08

18. Fernandito31 (Posts: 4; Member since: 26 Feb 2014)

This is the T-Mobile CEO response to this on twitter
@JohnLegere: We’ve said it before, but I’m happy to say it again. We look at REAL results from REAL people when we make network claims

What do you guys think about!?

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:20

19. drazwy (Posts: 198; Member since: 15 Jan 2014)

Root Who?

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:37 2

22. Planterz (Posts: 2079; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

I switched from Verizon to T-Mobile 3 days ago, and couldn't be happier. Obviously, I like the unlimited data, but my speeds are incredible, probably due to the fact that there's T-Mobile equipment on top of my apartment bulding, literally about 75 feet from my window.

When it comes to value, T-Mobile is king. Sprint sucks, but at least it's cheap. VZW and AT&T have great networks, but if you need a lot of data, the value simply isn't there. VZW and AT&T are filet mingon, and TM and Sprint are ground chuck.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 14:54 1

23. Planterz (Posts: 2079; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

It really does depend on where you live and work - not just in the country, but your specific area. I've seen some screaming speeds with VZ in Tucson, but where I live and where I work, speeds are mediocre at best. With TM, my speed at work is OK, and as I said, it approaches Ludicrous Speed at home.

Most people in Tucson use Verizon, at least, most people I know do, followed by AT&T (mostly iPhone or former iPhone owners), then TM, then Sprint. A lot of Cricket thrown in the mix too, of course. T-Mobile service is great here now, since last fall they upgraded all their equipment to LTE. Before then, it kinda sucked.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 15:04 1

25. youlookfoolish (Posts: 173; Member since: 14 Dec 2012)

T-Mobile mobile fan boys are going to lose their mind over this. But it's not a secret. T-Mobile has had the smallest overall network for some time.

Last place sounds right. LOL T-Mobile.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 15:11 1

26. Federated (Posts: 261; Member since: 06 Mar 2010)

I'm no fanboy. But I think T-Mobile has the best service and value here in Los Angeles. (Not applicable everywhere) For only $70/mo you get Unlimited Talk, Text, and Data (4G LTE with no throttling. I just hit 25 GB of data last month with a constant DL speed of 35-40mpbs).

I've never encountered those numbers when I was using AT&T service. Talk about value, AT&T I think are the greediest corporation on earth.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 21:29

39. Gemmol (Posts: 792; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)

What phone you had on AT&T and what phone you had when you switch to Tmobile

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 16:12 1

29. ojdidit84 (Posts: 458; Member since: 16 Jul 2011)

I'm no fanboy either but I can't get with this graph. I had Verizon and switched to TMo here in San Diego and couldn't be happier. My VZW service was great at first and then over the last 8-9 months, signal quality gradually got worse, data speeds got incredibly slow if I wasn't on the outskirts of the city where there was no one and even then I was only pulling no more than 15 down/up and started seeing dropped calls everywhere. Felt like being on Sprint back in 2007 all over again.

Have had TMo for 2 weeks now and haven't experienced a single dropped call, I get service in my house where I'd struggle to get a bar with VZW and I'm seeing a consistent 35-40 down on LTE and around 12 on HSPA+ which I could barely pull with Verizon's LTE. Not to mention that my data is now unlimited. I'm glad that I made the switch to TMo. I'll probably only miss VZW when I go camping...

They say you get what you pay for with VZW but I feel like I was being robbed and sold snake oil every month. I getting so much more for my money on TMo now.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 16:16

31. mikelemon (Posts: 95; Member since: 21 Nov 2013)

Fanboy alert

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 17:50

33. ojdidit84 (Posts: 458; Member since: 16 Jul 2011)


If switching to the carrier that's saving me money and giving me MORE than what I was getting before with the exception of maybe not having service in places that I'll never go. That releases phones & updates faster than anyone else. That allows me to use my apps like Google Wallet instead of forcing me to use what they want me to use. That doesn't put their giant logos and bloatware on phones.

If that makes me a fanboy, then sure. I'll accept that title.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 18:12

35. Planterz (Posts: 2079; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

Sounds like you could be my next door neighbor.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 21:32

40. Gemmol (Posts: 792; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)

Your a fanboy because someone show results but you deny it, we understand in different areas different carriers do better, if you had said that in your area tmobile do better then its fine but you deny the whole result saying I can't get with it so that makes you a fanboy

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 01:25

46. ojdidit84 (Posts: 458; Member since: 16 Jul 2011)

Apparently you have some reading comprehension issues because I clearly said IN SAN DIEGO and even gave the example of not getting service in my house on VZW where I do get service with TMo now.

I think the REAL fanboys are the people bashing TMo because they showed last on a survey where the data was gathered last year before they rolled out their LTE network. If so many people here have switched to TMo from the other carriers and are completely happy then that alone shows that this graph is flawed.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 01:54 1

47. itzmando (Posts: 115; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

I'm from San Diego too. But I don't live on the outskirts of the city.

I have VZW and no issues at all, that's great you pay for a service that gives you coverage. I thought VZW was fully built out with LTE cover and extended coverage but seems the outskirts are not covered.

I agree that people who bash TMo are not fanboys but really just annoying posters. I don't want to leave VZW due to unlimited data, TMo will still throttle heavy users which family members have mentioned happens then a txt appears letting them know.

I'm a heavy Pandora listening, YT junkie, Vine/FB/SnapChat kind of user so great coverage in all my trips throughout CA is a plus with VZW compared to TMo coverage. EX: I'm from Ventura County and the city of Ojai (mountain range) gets bad TMo coverage from what friends and family have complained about, but VZW and AT&T are fine there.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 02:14

48. ojdidit84 (Posts: 458; Member since: 16 Jul 2011)

I liked VZW while I had them but I kept noticing the quality of service slowly degrading month after month. Quite a few of my friends have TMo and I kept noticing how great their service was and how much faster their LTE speeds were than mine and the fact that they actually got service inside my house where I didn't is what caused me to switch. Well, that and the price difference.

I live in Bonita and I get 3 bars of LTE here whereas with VZW I couldn't even get 3G in my house. If only VZW had wifi calling.

Only thing I'll miss is not having LTE when I go back home, but even there the HSPA+ gives me the same speeds I was getting on VZW. I'll get to see the places where I don't get TMo service soon but according to the service maps I should be fine. Still more than happy with the service so far and they're only getting better.

posted on 06 Mar 2014, 19:47

50. itzmando (Posts: 115; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

I live in Southeast SD to be exact so I'm not too far from you. I'm really surprised that the Bonita area does not get the best VZW, its new to me.

But as more people join any network, of course the speeds will decrease. TMo is still rolling out their LTE towers slowly but HSPA+ as a fallback is nice. I guess it depends on Carrier's choice of adding the infrastructure to an area.

EX: family in San Bernardino use TMo. I get only 3G there with small spot of 4G in the downtown area. So this may be a future 4G coverage extension.

Even back in my hometown of Oxnard, CA the south part where my parents live has weak 4G signal but downtown near freeways its strong signal.

At least VZW is building out for better 4G extension coverage at a faster rate than TMo. Which is what I hope VZW is spending on since my family pays so much for their services.

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 17:55 1

34. wilsong17 (unregistered)

i pay 88 dollar umlimited everything since i dont travel that much i get lte here in nj and ny, i cancel my home internet, now i use wifi tether

88= unlimited lte, international call, insurance and i free internet to my house

posted on 05 Mar 2014, 19:55 1

37. Landmarkcm (Posts: 505; Member since: 11 Aug 2009)

I recently switched from Tmobile to Aio wireless to save a bit more money per month & I am seeing a slightly stronger & steadier signal on AT&T network they use. My main thing here though I find really hard to believe is how this supposed study has Sprint so far ahead of Tmobile in categories! At least here in Vegas & I know in major parts of CA Sprint is God awful. They can't even even get reliable 3g! data speeds plus their problem with dropped calls etc.

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