PCMag sent a team of testers (including our old friend Rob Pegoraro) to drive more than 10,000 miles across the United States to test the three big cellular networks—AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon—to see which one is best. (Not fastest, but “best,” which incorporates peak, average, and above-the-line speeds, plus dropped calls.) Perhaps surprisingly, the overall winner was T-Mobile, which has expanded its coverage significantly since merging with Sprint. T-Mobile isn’t always the fastest and doesn’t always have the best coverage, but when all factors balance out, PCMag found that T-Mobile beats out both AT&T and Verizon. T-Mobile’s secret sauce is its extensive mid-band 5G network, which offers reliable high-speed access in both cities and many rural areas.
Another interesting tidbit in the article is that for many people, mobile has become the primary way to access the Internet:
Mobile internet is the internet, now more than ever. According to Ericsson, between 2018 and 2022, mobile data traffic in North America quadrupled from 22 exabytes to 86 exabytes. Most of that growth is driven by the revolution in mobile video, which has risen from 60% to 70% of mobile data traffic. That’s almost 20 gigs of usage, per person, per month.
Increasingly, the online world is mobile. Also, we are officially old, having failed miserably to watch that much video on our iPhones in any month ever.