T-Mobile USA HSPA+ and the AT&T LTE networks are the nation's fastest "3G" and "4G" networks, respectively, among Tier 1 U.S. carriers, according to a new study from PCWorld. AT&T, T-Mobile top network speed tests.
PC World conducted tests on the networks of the four Tier 1 carriers in 13 cities: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle and Washington, D.C. The tests were conducted by Novarum, a strategic wireless consulting firm, and used smartphones suggested by the carriers.
Among "3G" networks, T-Mobile's HSPA+ network performed the best, with average downlink speeds of 3.84 Mbps. AT&T's HSPA+21 network came in second, with average downlink speeds of 2.62 Mbps. Verizon came in third with average speeds of 1.05 Mbps and Sprint came in fourth, with average speeds of 0.59 Mbps.
AT&T's LTE network provided the best downlink speeds among 4G networks, topping out at an average of 9.56 Mbps. That bested Verizon Wireless' (NYSE:VZ) LTE network, which had average downlink speeds of 7.35 Mbps. However, Verizon's LTE network beat AT&T's in uplink speeds, with an average uplink speed of 5.85 Mbps compared with AT&T's 5.15 Mbps.