Before we begin let’s just get this out of the way: if you are a customer of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, or Verizon it is most likely because that particular company provides a service you want, need, and/or like. The following article is based on tests done by PCWorld in December of 2009 and January of 2010 and may not necessarily reflect your experience with, or preference of, mobile providers. Now, let’s continue…
The PCWorld tests, from December 2009 and January 2010, were done as a follow up to tests done last spring in an attempt to see if the major U.S. mobile networks had made any improvements to their wireless data infrastructure. The speed tests were conducted in: Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Denver, New Orleans, New York City, Orlando, Phoenix, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, and Seattle on both mobile phones and laptop data cards. We’ve linked to PCWorld’s thorough article for your scrutiny, however, here is the high level overview.
In the Spring 2009 tests the companies results were as follows:
- AT&T: average download speed 812 Kbps, average upload speed 660 Kbps
- Sprint: average download speed 808 Kbps, average upload not listed in article
- T-Mobile: not tested, no significant 3G footprint at time of testing
- Verizon: average download speed 951 Kbps, average upload speed 426 Kbps
In the Winter of 2009/2010 tests the companies results were as follows:
- AT&T: average download speed 1410 Kbps, average upload speed 773 Kbps
- Sprint: average download speed 795 Kbps, average upload speed 396 Kbps
- T-Mobile: average download speed 868 Kbps, average upload speed 311 Kbps
- Verizon: average download speed 877 Kbps, average upload speed 434 Kbps
As you can see, AT&T’s network, in PC World’s pretty rigorous tests, has improved tremendously and is over 67% faster. Not bad for less than a year, no?