Data Shows Network Preparations Resulted in Robust Mobile Connectivity During Pope Francis’ Historic Tour of Philadelphia

DULLES, VA – OCTOBER 2, 2015 Global Wireless Solutions, Inc. (GWS), a leading independent network benchmarking firm, today reveals how well-prepared the mobile networks were for the crowds attending the Papal visit in Philadelphia. GWS’ Android Speed App was used to evaluate the mobile network performance of AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile over the course of Pope Francis’ two-day tour of Philadelphia, PA, and analysis concludes that AT&T was the most reliable. The other networks fared well but overall AT&T had the best performance.

Paul Carter, CEO of GWS commented, “It’s critical that operators are prepared for major events like this and ensure that mobile networks are robust enough to support the influx of customers looking to do everything from uploading selfies to downloading schedules. The Pope’s visit was a great test for the network operators to see if their preparations were sufficient or if there were key areas they needed to improve on. The results of the tests showed that particularly in the case of AT&T, the preparations in Philadelphia paid off and customers on its network experienced the fastest download speeds, as well as a strong LTE signal throughout the parade route specifically.”
Key findings from the network testing which benchmarked AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile include:

  • AT&T had the highest reliability compared to T-Mobile and Verizon, with more than a 99 percent task reliability when testing photo upload and download speeds, webpage download speeds, and latency
  • AT&T had the lowest latency when compared to T-Mobile and Verizon at just 97 milliseconds, 22 percent faster than the next best carrier
  • AT&T had the highest browser throughputs during the parade specifically, 68 percent higher than the next best carrier
  • AT&T had the highest download throughputs during the parade specifically, 17 percent higher than the next best carrier
  • T-Mobile had the highest upload throughputs during the parade specifically, 28 percent higher than the next best carrier
  • AT&T claimed the strongest LTE signal for the events


More than 4,000 task tests were conducted in order to evaluate network performance of Tier 1 carriers (AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon) over the course of the two-day parade for Pope Francis on September 26-27, 2015. The tests were conducted using the GWS Android Speed App running on Samsung Galaxy S5 smartphones.

About Global Wireless Solutions, Inc.

Global Wireless Solutions, Inc. defines the industry standard for network benchmarking, analysis and testing. Working with some of the world’s largest wireless network providers, GWS offers standardized, high-quality network data and engineering analysis to its customers through a suite of benchmarking products, services and diagnostic apps that includes drive, venue, and in-building testing.

Firmly rooted in a deep understanding of network engineering, GWS provides best-in-class, turnkey solutions to help customers better understand overall network performance as today’s wireless networks grow and evolve.

Founded in 1996, GWS is headquartered in Dulles, VA. At last count, GWS has driven more than 9 million data collection miles for its customers. For more information, and follow us on Twitter at @gwsolutionsinc.

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