T-Mobile vs Verizon vs AT&T: There's only one spot in the limelight in new 5G report

T-Mobile vs Verizon vs AT&T: There's only one spot in the limelight in new 5G report
Have you had enough mobile network experience evaluations and comparisons between the largest US wireless service providers for a quarter... or even an entire year? Let's hope not, because umlaut is today following in Opensignal and Ookla's footsteps with its own latest comprehensive analysis of T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T's 5G performance across the nation and across a bunch of different categories and indicators.

This "audit report" focuses entirely on the three's 5G networks and the speeds, coverage, latency, and stability they deliver as measured in 15 billion tests conducted by 1.1 billion users in the 24-week period between January 16 and July 2, 2023.

The results are... largely unsurprising for folks familiar with these types of reports and especially umlaut's very particular set of research, which uses its own unique methodology to crunch a total "5G score" on a 1,000 points scale.

Head and shoulders above the competition

Because there's no such thing as a perfect wireless network, none of the top three US carriers can even come close to hitting the aforementioned 1,000 mark. But T-Mobile somehow manages to beat AT&T by more than 100 points and Verizon by 192, sitting at a not-very-close-to-perfect-but-still-pretty-amazing 796 tally.

What's perhaps even more remarkable is that this result represents an improvement from T-Mo's 783 score registered back in April (for the October 24, 2022 - April 9, 2023 window), not to mention a big progress over the 737 points tallied by the nationwide 5G king this time last year.

Interestingly, AT&T's total in this key category, obtained by basically combining all the other segments of the report we're going to talk about in a second, marks an even bigger improvement compared to the carrier's score from July 2022.

That's (more than) enough to keep Ma Bell firmly in the silver medal position despite its 5G score actually dropping slightly from 700 points in April 2023 to 692 now. Verizon, meanwhile, remains a distant third placer, only gaining 2 points from April and 33 from last July to show a worrying stagnation for the industry as a whole.

T-Mobile 6 - Verizon 1 - AT&T 0

In addition to having the best overall 5G network stateside (by a mile), T-Mobile also rules (rather comfortably) when it comes to 5G reliability while edging out AT&T in the 5G coverage and 5G stability departments as well.

Then you have the 5G download speed and 5G upload speed categories, which are also very easily dominated by the "Un-carrier", leaving Verizon with the 5G latency crown and nothing else and AT&T completely empty-handed as far as silverware is concerned.

There's obviously no way to look at these numbers and try to find a very positive angle for Verizon and AT&T, which are yet again absolutely pummeled by the operator that was once (not even that long ago) considered the underdog of the wireless industry.

The dark horse has turned itself into an unbeatable stallion with vital help from the now-defunct Sprint, and both in the short and mid term, the competition simply cannot keep up with the nationwide leader. Not in 5G coverage and 5G stability (especially as far as Verizon is concerned), and certainly not in 5G speeds, which is a category that T-Mobile somehow manages to continuously improve.

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Of course, Magenta has impressively boosted almost all of its scores from April, only dropping slightly in the 5G coverage and 5G stability fields, which is not something we can say about Big Red and Ma Bell. Verizon's 5G coverage result, for instance, is down... from an already disappointing 63.9 percent to an outright terrible 62.8, while AT&T's bottom-of-the-table 5G latency score is inching closer and closer to the abyss.

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