T-Mobile Trounces Verizon And AT&T In 5G Wireless Speed Test Showdown

T-Mobile 5G map outline on a night sky
T-Mobile is in a braggadocios mood today and for good reason. It can claim to officially be the fastest mobile operator in the United States, both in 5G and overall, and it's not even close. The numbers to back the claim are included in Ookla's latest market report on the state of US mobile and fixed networks, the former of which shows T-Mobile way out in front the competition.

 In tests performed only on a 5G connection, T-Mobile notched the fastest median download speed at 191.12Mbps for the first quarter of 2022. That's actually just a slight increase over the fourth quarter of 2021, but still enough enough to hold a more-than-comfortable lead over Verizon Wireless and especially AT&T.

Ookla 5G speed test graph
Source: Ookla

As noted above, Verizon Wireless took second place with a 107.25 Mbps medial download speed. That's a big uptick from the 78.52 Mbps it registered in the previous quarter after turning on its 5G C-band spectrum in January, but still not anywhere close enough to catch up with T-Mobile, which is 37% faster according to these results.

AT&T finished in last place with a median 5G download speed of just 68.43 Mbps, and that's after also turning on its new 5G spectrum during the first quarter of 2022.

"Our early bet and two-year lead in mid-band 5G continues to pay off giving T-Mobile customers the fastest, most available 5G network in the country," said Neville Ray, President of Technology at T-Mobile. "Our 5G network is delivering a powerful performance boost and it’s resonating, with over 40% of our customers now using a 5G device, accounting for more than HALF of our network traffic. And we’re just getting started - this leading network experience will continue to improve as we accelerate our 5G build this year and beyond."

T-Mobile also took the top spot as the fastest mobile operator in the US overall, factoring in all types of networks. Here's how it broke down...
  • T-Mobile: 117.83 Mbps
  • Verizon Wireless: 62.62 Mbps
  • AT&T: 56.10 Mbps
Naturally your mileage is going to vary depending on where you live. For what it's worth, though, T-Mobile had the highest Consistency Score with 88.3% of results showing at least 5 Mbps download speeds and 1 Mbps upload speeds. Verizon Wireless wasn't all that far behind at 84.6%, and neither was AT&T at 82.1%.

The further you dig into Ookla's report, the better T-Mobile looks. In addition to posting the fastest median downloads and highest Consisteny Score, it also took the top spot in 5G availability—Ookla found that 65% of T-Mobile customers spent the majority of their time on 5G, which is nearly double that for Verizon.

That said, Verizon did earn some bragging rights of its own, just on the fixed broadband side of the equation (where T-Mobile is not a player). It posted the highest median download speed at 184.35 Mbps, followed by Xfinity at 179.12 Mbps, Cox at 174.32 Mbps, Spectrum at 166.46 Mbps, AT&T at 140.52 Mbps, and CenturyLink at 40.58 Mbps.