Speedtest US Broadband Report Shows T-Mobile Now The Fastest Mobile Carrier Over Both AT&T And Verizon

T-Mobile Celebrate

T-Mobile boss John Legere is in full celebration mode over the recent announcement that its One unlimited data plans now come with free access to Netflix, the online streaming juggernaut, but give it some time and we imagine he will be tweeting about the least broadband test results from Speedtest as well. Why is that? According to Speedtest, T-Mobile is the fastest mobile carrier in the nation.

The finding is based on Speetest intelligence data captured during the first half of 2017. In that time, nearly 3 million unique mobile devices were used to perform over 14 million cellular network tests by consumers, giving Speedtest a relatively large sample size to analyze. As a whole, the data revealed that mobile download speeds in the United States increasing 19.2 percent year-over-year to 22.69 megabits per second (Mbps). Average upload speeds went up as well, though just by 4 percent to 8.51 Mbps.

Speedtest Graph
Source: Speedtest/Ookla

That is all well and good, but the big bragging point for T-Mobile is that it can claim to be faster than its rivals, with independent testing to back that claim. Based on consumer testing, T-Mobile subscribers averaged a download speed of 23.17 Mbps. That is faster than the national average, and also outpaces the competition. Verizon came in second with an average download speed of 21.13 Mbps, followed by AT&T at 20.05 Mbps and Sprint at 15.39 Mbps.

"The combination of a tightly-spaced cell site grid and a smaller subscriber base than Verizon and AT&T could be the keys to T-Mobile’s success in the US market and to their ability to support the exponential growth in mobile data consumption," Speedtest noted. "Leveraging 700MHz spectrum, T-Mobile has been expanding its LTE footprint into new markets. Additionally, T-Mobile has been aggressively refarming their spectrum, previously used for legacy technologies such as GSM and WCDMA, and committing those assets to the more efficient LTE technology."

Speedtest also poured praise onto T-Mobile for how quickly it brings new technologies and advancements to market, versus the competition.

"With the fastest time-to-market when rolling out advanced LTE features such as Wi-Fi Calling, HD Voice, VoLTE using Enhanced Voice Services Codec, various capacity enablers such as Higher Order Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO), advanced modulation schemes (256QAM), and LTE in the Unlicensed 5GHz band, T-Mobile is in an excellent position to become the first all-LTE mobile carrier in the United States which will allow them to deliver voice and data more efficiently," Speedtest added.

Indeed, T-Mobile has been aggressive in improving its network. Earlier this year the spunky wireless carrier was the big  winner at the FCC's spectrum auction. With an $8 billion bid, T-Mobile won 45 percent of the low-band 600MHz spectrum the FCC put up for sale, which Legere said at the time was "possibly the biggest news ever" for T-Mobile.


Well, that did not take long. Right as we went live with this article, T-Mobile sent out a press release bragging about the results.

"Millions of wireless customers across the US have spoken—AGAIN— and they’ve shown that T-Mobile is the master of all things unlimited, while Verizon is the master of none," said Neville Ray, Chief Technology Officer for T-Mobile. "This is the reason we’re able to do things like Netflix On Us. Maybe now the carriers will finally start listening to their customers … stranger things have happened."

Top and Thumbnail Image Sources: Instagram via John Legere