DULLES, VA – September 2, 2022 — Global Wireless Solutions (GWS) has completed its annual nationwide review of U.S. mobile networks. For the first time in GWS’ yearly performance testing of U.S. mobile networks, there is a tie for best overall network: AT&T and Verizon finished first in the best overall network OneScore ranking with T-Mobile in third place.
GWS’ OneScore evaluation and ranking process results in the industry’s most exhaustive review of mobile networks as it combines controlled, scientific testing of the major networks with consumer research (i.e., research that explores sentiment, and pinpoints performance factors and features most important to consumers). As in previous years, GWS tested in all 50 states. The drive test results were collected by driving nearly 900,000 miles in 498 markets across major metropolitan areas, smaller urban cities, and rural towns – covering 93% of the U.S. population.
Evaluation Highlights – How Operators Performed in 2022
- Best Overall Network: Based on GWS’ Best Network OneScore, AT&T and Verizon are both ranked first followed by T-Mobile.
- Most Reliable Network: Based on GWS’ Most Reliable Network OneScore, AT&T is ranked first followed by Verizon then T-Mobile. GWS’ debut of the most reliable network ranking considers both voice and data reliability tests in combination with research into factors that matter most to consumers in terms of consistent, stable performance.
- Overall Data Reliability: AT&T had the highest success rate across the nation in completing data tasks followed by T-Mobile then Verizon.
- 5G Data Reliability: AT&T had the highest success rate across the nation in completing data tasks while on their 5G network followed by T-Mobile then Verizon.
- Download Speeds: Verizon had top marks for the small download task category (such as receiving app-related content or loading web pages) while T-Mobile was the fastest in the large download task category (receiving photos and videos). AT&T was third in each category.
- Upload Speeds: Verizon had the fastest upload speeds for both small and large upload tasks, such as posting social media content, photos, and videos. AT&T was the second fastest for small upload tasks; and tied for second with T-Mobile for large file upload speeds.
- Network Capacity Stress Tests: T-Mobile had the fastest average throughputs when GWS stress-tested the networks to highlight the maximum throughputs possible at any given time; Verizon was next followed by AT&T.
- Video Streaming: Verizon performed best across the three video categories earning top marks in video quality, least amount of buffering, and quickest time to load a video. T-Mobile was next in all three categories followed by AT&T.
- Voice Calls: AT&T was best in three of the four voice testing categories – call quality, accessibility (highest number of successful call initiations), and retainability (least number of dropped calls). Verizon finished second in each of those categories followed by T-Mobile. In the fourth voice test category, call setup, Verizon had the fastest call setup time followed by T-Mobile then AT&T. It’s worth noting that voice calling continues to be the single most important mobile phone function to consumers. In particular, in our 2022 OneScore survey, when asked if they could only use their cell phone for one function or service, consumers indicated that making or receiving voice calls was the most critical mobile phone function to them. A trend that has continued over the last five years.
- Coverage: AT&T had the most coverage in the areas tested followed by Verizon then T-Mobile.
To learn more about GWS’ 2022 evaluation of U.S. mobile networks, visit www.gwsolutions.com/best-wireless-network-in-usa/.
Methodology and Notes
GWS conducted direct benchmark testing in all 50 states from February to July 2022. GWS drove nearly 900,000 miles across 498 markets throughout the U.S. during the testing process, resulting in the completion of approximately 8.8 million individual controlled tests. GWS’ collection and evaluation of data were conducted using Rohde & Schwarz SmartBenchmarker test equipment, Samsung Galaxy mobile devices, and GWS’ MobiStat data evaluation and reporting platform.
All survey figures, unless stated otherwise, are from a study commissioned by GWS and conducted by Toluna. Total sample size was 5,000 adults (ages 18 and older). Fieldwork was undertaken between July 5th and July 17th, 2022. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of adult Americans.
About Global Wireless Solutions, Inc.
For most consumers today, their mobile device is their life’s remote control. As the world’s largest independent mobile insights consulting firm, GWS measures every aspect of how people live, work and play via their mobile devices – as well as how mobile network performance affects them. At last count, GWS has performed 17,500 local market tests and driven over 15 million miles while collecting data for network engineering analysis.
Combining our market-leading network benchmarking technology and methodology with deep behavioral data, we help businesses and organizations to drive innovation and deliver better customer experiences through mobile insights, anywhere in the world. Championing the needs of mobile users by understanding and testing the things that matter to them, we’ve evolved our technology and services in step with the needs of industry and consumers for over 26 years. For more information, visit gwsolutions.com and follow us on Twitter at @gwsolutionsinc.