Ookla Speedtest, RootMetrics and Opensignal all recently released results of their latest studies of 5G performance between major wireless competitors. Each showed how each wireless carrier is getting better, stronger and faster, quarter after quarter. However, there is something no test mentions, which is key for every user and investor to understand.
First, it’s important to recognize these are 5G tests. Carriers only offer 5G in parts of their network. It’s being upgraded yes, but it will be a while before it’s everywhere. So, these tests do not represent the full picture of customer satisfaction with a carrier.
5G is the future, but choosing a carrier today based solely on their 5G performance, simply does not make sense for most users. Not yet anyway.
Which 5G wireless carrier is best for you, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile?
When it comes to these 5G studies, there were three tests, and they all seem to both complement each other and contradict each other on different points. Choosing the best carrier based on their 5G progress really depends on quite a few different factors.
That’s the problem with solely depending on these kinds of studies to make your decision regarding which is the best wireless carrier for you. It is too often quite confusing.
We must remember that the point of these tests is for carriers to use in advertising and marketing purposes. However, they do point out strengths and weaknesses within carriers and that keeps each moving forward just to keep up or not fall behind.
Good news is AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile all getting faster and better
The good news is simple. All three studies said all three wireless carriers are all getting better, faster and stronger.
All three wireless carriers, AT&T Mobility, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless had strengths and weaknesses. One was stronger in one category, but another was stronger in another.
Remember, there are multiple categories which are considered in these studies like 5G speed, reliability, availability, latency and more
5G wireless race has only just begun
The first thing we need to understand is this race has only just begun. And there can be no clear winner in a race that has only just started.
It’s like when we moved from 3G to 4G. It took years, but today every carrier offers 4G throughout their network. It will work the same with 5G.
While these studies are helpful, they are also only one slice of the pie. They should not be considered the only way to choose a wireless network. They should be one part of the decision, but there are also other parts which just as important.
Everyone uses wireless differently
Let me explain. You see, these are national, generic studies. They are great for making a generic point, and they are used in advertising and marketing by the carriers, but they are not helpful for individuals since everyone uses wireless differently.
These test results do not mention how the results are not consistent from market to market across the nation. There are always parts of cities, even neighborhoods which are stronger and others weaker.
Choosing what’s right for you depends on where you use your devices and the way you use them. We are all different.
After all, even two members of the same family may find two different carriers work better for each of them because even though they live together, they work in different places.
If that is the case, you have to make a decision. Do you get a family plan to lower the costs or do you get different networks for each family member for potentially better connectivity for each of them?
Even though it’s easier and often less expensive to get a family plan, it is not always the way to get best service for every family member.
Three 5G wireless carriers AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile
Most people do not realize that even though there are quite a few wireless competitors and resellers in the United States, there are only three which operate their own network. AT&T Mobility, Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile are the three wireless networks to choose from.
There are smaller networks like US Cellular and C Spire Wireless who operate their own smaller network but resell the larger networks for national coverage.
All the others are MVNO resellers. That includes Xfinity Mobile, Spectrum Mobile, Altice Mobile, TracFone and so many others.
These regular and ongoing tests of wireless speed, connectivity, reliability and more has historically had AT&T and Verizon duking it out for number one. Each would advertise and market the part of the study that had them listed as number one.
Sprint was typically listed as third and T-Mobile, fourth. However, after acquiring Sprint, T-Mobile is joining the group as a quality wireless vendor.
That is good news for the U.S. marketplace. That means there are now three, high-quality wireless carriers the marketplace users can choose between.
Great news is AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile are all great wireless networks
All that being said, the bottom line is this.
With these three studies, all three wireless networks in the United States are now all worth consideration. That’s great news.
If we look backwards, there was a bigger difference between the performance of these three wireless carriers. That’s no longer the case.
Today, AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile are all excellent in all areas. It’s just that some are further ahead than others, and some are better in some areas while others are better in other areas. However, they are all heading in the same, positive direction.
Best way to choose the right wireless carrier for you
However, the best way to choose a wireless carrier for you is for you to test them in the areas where you spend time. Period.
You see, your opinion can often be very different than these generic studies. Even in a neighborhood, signal strength can be very different in different areas, depending on the carrier, the technology in the cell tower nearest to you, if there is anything blocking a strong signal, etc.
And when you go to work, each workplace can have a very different experience.
So, the best way is for you to test and find the best wireless carrier for your needs. Test-drive the services from all three carriers.
Use these three networks at your home, your office, where you work, shop and all the places you spend time.
This should be done for everyone in your family. However, that can raise some issues. What if one family member has best service with AT&T and another with Verizon? Which do you choose?
There is a window of time, typically a few weeks, that each carrier gives you a grace period to make sure the device and network work well for you. Use this.
Keep the best wireless service and return the rest
Test and compare all three networks. Hopefully, you and your entire family can agree. Then keep the best and return the rest.
The family plan often gives significant discounts. However, if different carriers are better for different members, it may make sense to have separate accounts.
Generally speaking, all three will give you excellent quality and reliability generally.
Just remember, you do not want to choose a carrier based on a general study just to find out you only get one or two bars of signal out of four in the areas you spend time?
You may find a big difference between carriers. You may find that one carrier gives you the best service. Or you may also find that two or three carriers give you strong service. If that’s the case, then the choice is yours.
Choose wireless carrier based on your needs, not generic studies
The bottom line is this. You don’t want to choose a carrier only based on a generic, national study or report. These reports are very important, and they should be a factor, but only one factor.
Choose based on which gives you and others on your plan the strongest signal, best performance, most availability, and reliability where you spend time.
That is the best way to choose for you.
So, congratulations to all three wireless carriers and their users. They are all doing a great job. What’s good to know is that today, AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile are generally all excellent and continually upgrading their systems to 5G getting better, faster, and stronger.
The post Kagan: What Ookla, RootMetrics, Opensignal 5G reports don’t tell us appeared first on RCR Wireless News.