RootMetrics Report: Verizon and AT&T Named Top-Performing Mobile Networks in Austin; T-Mobile Records Fastest Data Speeds

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In a new report released today, Verizon and AT&T shared honors as the top-performing mobile networks in Austin.

In a new report released today, Verizon and AT&T shared honors as the top-performing mobile networks in Austin. This marks the first time Verizon has won or shared the RootMetrics Overall RootScore Award in Austin since October 2011, as AT&T had won the award outright four straight times. Meanwhile, AT&T and Verizon ranked first in both network reliability and speed, while T-Mobile posted the fastest download and upload speeds in Austin. That’s according to independent mobile analytics firm RootMetrics®, which measures mobile performance of the four major national carriers with tests designed to replicate real-world consumer behavior.

The RootMetrics overall performance category includes results across data, call, and text testing; the top-performing network(s) is awarded the Overall RootScore Award. A good Overall RootScore means strong overall performance and a good consumer experience.

The final Overall Performance RootScore rankings for Austin:

1 – Verizon (97.7)
1 – T-Mobile (97.5)
3 – AT&T (95.2)
4 – Sprint (86.9)

Network Reliability and Speed

RootMetrics measures network reliability and speed to provide a clear and holistic view of each network’s performance in these key areas of the consumer mobile experience. The Reliability Index is based on a combination of results from data, call, and text tests, while the Speed Index includes data and text results. Looking at the network reliability and speed indices in conjunction with Overall RootScores offers the most comprehensive look at a typical mobile experience in Austin, Texas.

AT&T and Verizon tied for the top spot in both network reliability and network speed.
Reliability Index rankings:
1 – AT&T (99.6)
1 – Verizon (99.5)
3 – T-Mobile (97.3)
4 – Sprint (93.1)

Speed Index rankings:

1 – Verizon (90.6)
1 – AT&T (90.1)
3 – T-Mobile (89.5)
4 – Sprint (65.2)

“Our recent testing in Austin shows that the carriers are focused on providing a reliable experience,” said Bill Moore, RootMetrics CEO. “AT&T and Verizon tied for the highest rank on our network reliability index, but with scores above 93 for all four networks, reliability in Austin was outstanding. We also found fast data speeds, but speed doesn’t mean much if you can’t reliably connect to your network. Consumers in the Austin area have multiple options for choosing a carrier with both reliability and speed.”

Data Performance: Verizon wins Data Category; T-Mobile Delivers Fastest Data Speeds in Austin

Data RootScores factor in each network’s reliability and speed when downloading and uploading data, performing email tasks, and handling files that represent elements of a webpage. Verizon won the Data RootScore Award in Austin for the first time since October 2011 with a score of 96.9. Verizon’s Data RootScore was slightly higher than those of AT&T (96.4) and T-Mobile (95.6), but T-Mobile recorded the fastest median download and upload speeds in Austin, with an impressive 17.6 Mbps for download and a lightning-fast 12.7 Mbps for upload.

Median download and upload speeds by network
T-Mobile: 17.6 Mbps download/12.7 Mbps upload
Verizon: 13.8 Mbps download/6.6 Mbps upload
AT&T: 10.8 Mbps download/9.2 Mbps upload
Sprint: 2.4 Mbps download/1.0 Mbps upload

Data speeds affect how quickly consumers can perform various tasks online. For example, in an ideal situation, uploading medium-sized pictures (1 MB) to Facebook or other online albums typically takes 25 seconds to 45 seconds on average at speeds below 3.0 Mbps. At speeds above 6.0 Mbps, uploading a similar picture generally takes less than 1 second.

Making the call
Making calls in Austin should be a smooth experience on any of the four networks. Verizon and AT&T shared the Call RootScore Award for the fourth consecutive time in Austin, with scores of 99.2 and 99.1. T-Mobile and Sprint both ranked third with Call RootScores of 94.7 and 91.5, respectively. With Call RootScores above 91 across the board, consumers shouldn’t have much trouble making calls on any of the four networks.

Text me
T-Mobile won Text RootScore Award with a score of 96.4. With Text RootScores above 93.8 for all four networks, texting in Austin should be a hassle-free experience on any of the four networks.

Nearly 26,000 tests conducted in Austin
To evaluate the mobile experience in Austin, RootMetrics conducted 25,593 call, data, and text tests on the networks of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon during all hours of the day and night from May 29 – June 4, 2014. The tests were conducted using the RootMetrics RootScout app running on Android-based, consumer smartphones purchased off-the-shelf from carrier stores. Tests were conducted indoors (at 33 locations) and outdoors during drive tests (covering 1,111 miles). For details about RootMetrics testing, see the methodology section of the RootMetrics website. Mobile performance varies depending on where people live, work, or otherwise spend time. Because a variety of factors can influence performance, examples that list what data speeds mean while performing various mobile activities are a general look at data speeds for illustrative purposes and aren’t specific to Austin.

About RootMetrics®
RootMetrics® is an independent mobile analytics firm that offers insights into the consumer mobile experience. RootMetrics provides data on mobile network performance to help people make more informed mobile decisions. The company offers its RootScore® Report series for the nation, metropolitan markets, and airports, as well as its downloadable CoverageMap app. To ensure that RootMetrics testing reflects real-world mobile usage, testing is conducted based on where, when, and how consumers use their devices most often.


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