RootMetrics Shows Consumers how LTE Performs in New York and which Carrier Made it to the Top

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After nearly 69,000 Real-world Data, Call and Text Tests, Results Show Verizon on Top; Marks First Time Any Carrier Sweeps Every Category

New York Data Graph

“With our ongoing testing, we’re working to give consumers the broadest possible picture of how the carriers’ networks are measuring up,” said Bill Moore, CEO of RootMetrics.

RootMetrics™ announced today the latest New York RootScore™ Report and corresponding RootScore Awards. The report analyzes results from nearly 69,000 real-world data, call and text tests on the AT&T, MetroPCS, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon networks. Marking the first time any carrier has won every RootScore Award in a market, Verizon’s LTE network swept all of the RootMetrics testing categories.

Across the country, RootMetrics is increasingly seeing Verizon and AT&T compete for the claim of fastest data network. Though AT&T now offers LTE service in New York, they couldn’t keep pace with Verizon’s LTE network. Verizon’s LTE easily bested AT&T’s LTE when comparing average download and upload speeds. RootMetrics will continue to compare the LTE performance of Verizon and AT&T whenever possible.

With the exception of Sprint, all of the national carriers recorded faster average download speeds during this round of testing than they did when RootMetrics first visited New York in July 2011. During recent testing, Sprint trailed the other carriers by a large margin when comparing average download speeds.

T-Mobile offered a strong showing in New York, recording average download speeds comparable to those RootMetrics found on AT&T’s LTE network.

RootMetrics also added testing and results for MetroPCS in this latest New York report. The company will continue to test and add regional carriers whenever possible to provide the most complete picture of mobile performance.

“With our ongoing testing, we’re working to give consumers the broadest possible picture of how the carriers’ networks are measuring up,” said Bill Moore, CEO of RootMetrics. “Data speed is a factor, but people should still look closely at how carriers perform in all areas – data, text and calling – to determine which carrier works best for an individual’s mobile needs and usage patterns. We’re also helping consumers place LTE performance in a larger picture: LTE is about more than just pure speed. How often LTE service is available for a consumer is just as important. LTE isn’t always accessible and we’re showing what speeds consumers find in real-world conditions.”

Which Carrier Came Out on Top in New York?    

  •     Data Performance: The RootMetrics data performance tests analyzed how fast each carrier’s network was able to download and upload files and how often a customer could successfully connect to the data network.

Verizon’s LTE earned the top spot in the LTE category, with average download speeds of 12.3 Mbps and average upload speeds of 6.2 Mbps. AT&T and T-Mobile tied for second in the data download category, with average download speeds of 6.6 Mbps (AT&T) and 6.2 Mbps (T-Mobile).

Verizon recorded download speeds above 5 Mbps in 68.5% of tests, T-Mobile did so in 53.1% of tests and AT&T did so in 43.6% of tests.

At the other end of the spectrum, MetroPCS recorded download speeds below 1.5 Mbps in 79.9% of tests, and Sprint did so in 77.3% of tests.

Verizon and AT&T proved the most reliable data network in New York, with failure rates near or below 3.5%. MetroPCS and Sprint, on the other hand, recorded failure rates near or above 8.9%.

  •     Call Performance: With the lowest failure rate during testing, Verizon ranked first in the call performance category.
  •      Text Performance: To replicate the most typical user experience, RootMetrics compared how long it took each carrier to receive a single text message. Verizon placed first in both overall receive time as well as receive time for a text within a carrier’s network, recording 3.1 seconds for both measures. At 67.5 seconds, Sprint placed last in overall receive time.
  •     Overall: With a strong showing in all three categories, Verizon ranked first in the combined standings for New York. The final results are:

1 – Verizon (96.3)
2 – AT&T (71.3)
3—T-Mobile (62.4)
4 – MetroPCS (44)
4 – Sprint (41.3)

The May 2012 New York RootScore Report is the latest in an ongoing series of performance measurement reports and corresponding RootScore Awards from RootMetrics. The company will continue to publish additional reports on U.S. wireless markets to help consumers make better decisions about the right carrier for his or her individual needs. Review all RootScore reports at

To evaluate the New York area, RootMetrics conducted nearly 69,000 call, data and text tests during a seven-day period, covering all hours of the day and night, from March 30-April 5, 2012. The real-world tests were conducted using the RootMetrics CoverageMap app running on Android-based, off-the-shelf consumer smartphones from carriers’ stores. To ensure that testing aligns with consumer experience, and to provide each carrier with the chance to rate as highly as possible, RootMetrics utilizes the most advanced smartphones available at the time of testing. Tests centered on activities that consumers perform most often: making phone calls, uploading and downloading files from the Internet, and sending and receiving texts.

Consumers who are interested to see how their network coverage measures up can download the free RootMetrics Cell Phone CoverageMap app for iPhone or Android devices.

Mobile performance varies depending on where people live, work or otherwise spend time.
The results of this report, combined with the geographical coverage maps at and via the Cell Phone CoverageMap app, allow people to make better decisions about the right carrier for their individual needs.

About RootMetrics™
Based in the Seattle area, RootMetrics is a fiercely independent data company dedicated to helping improve the daily mobile experience of consumers. Numbers are powerful and helping the mobile consumer is our #1 priority. We’re a facilitator between consumers and carriers, using technology on smartphones to gather independent data so that the carriers hear real-world concerns, can make smarter decisions on how to upgrade their networks, and connect with consumers. We’re gathering accurate, trusted data that helps consumers find the products and services that best fit their unique needs so that they can get the most out of their mobile lives. RootMetrics: making mobile work better for consumers.

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Ann Marie Ricard
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