Verizon is once again the best performing wireless network, according to extensive nationwide testing by RootMetrics.
Wireless networks put to the test
Professional testers drove nearly 250,000 miles to test performance in all 50 states, from big cities to small towns. They ranked the four major wireless carriers on their reliability, speed, data, call and text performance.
Here’s a snapshot of the overall results from the second half of 2016:
A closer look at the rankings
RootMetrics described Verizon’s performance at the national level as “outstanding.” The carrier earned top honors for the seventh consecutive time with an overall score of 93.9.
“Based on our testing, Verizon is the undisputed leader in terms of coverage and network reliability. Indeed, Verizon’s network reliability results were the strongest among all carriers at the metro, state, and national levels in the second half of 2016.”
AT&T finished a strong second in all categories except call, placing third behind Sprint.
There was good news for Sprint, the nation’s number four carrier by subscribers, which improved its rank in the text category to tie AT&T for second place.
T-Mobile continued to perform better in metro areas compared to state or national levels.
“As AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile continue to expand their LTE footprints beyond metropolitan markets, Verizon could face stronger competition in our testing of the US moving forward,” RootMetrics found.
Aside from national performance, the testers took a look at how the four carriers performed on a state-by-state basis. Verizon dominated its competitors in this breakdown, winning 39 states outright.
Finally, RootMetrics looked at 125 major metro areas. Verizon’s overall award tally of 116 was about twice that of AT&T, its next-closest competitor. Sprint improved in call and text testing.
What does this all mean? Bragging rights for Verizon. The carrier has used RootMetrics’ data in its advertisements before, so it’s likely that they’ll continue to do that in the future.
BUT… the best network isn’t necessarily the best for you
Verizon has already put out a news release to highlight these findings, but just because they’re #1 doesn’t mean they’re your only option for reliable wireless service.
What matters most is how your cell phone provider performs where you live, where you work and where you travel. You can use this interactive map to search RootMetrics’ findings by city.
What we’re trying to say is that if service with a carrier other than Verizon is strong in your area, you may be able to cut your cell phone bill in half by switching to another provider — without sacrificing quality.
Take a look at your options in Clark’s best cell phone plans and deals guide for 2017.