T-Mobile “Expert” Says Verizon Is Least Efficient Spectrum User, T-Mobile Is Most Efficient

The T-Mobile vs. Verizon spectrum war continues with another salvo from T-Mobile as they challenge Verizon’s claim that it is the most efficient user of mobile spectrum in the US. Earlier today, T-Mobile rolled out an “expert” to not only knock Verizon’s claim, but to dig in a little deeper by showing Verizon as the most inefficient spectrum user in the US.

Computer science research professor at Illinois Institute of Technology Dennis Roberson presented a series of slides along with regulatory filings indicating Verizon used flawed math to calculate its own efficiency calculations. Roberson went even further by saying that when the math is corrected, T-Mobile becomes the most efficient user of spectrum.

Roberson’s set of results, including the regulatory filing and presentation are on T-Mobile’s website, but his argument can be summed up with this as written by Kevin Fitchard for GigaOM: 

Verizon treats all of its connections as equals in its analysis without accounting for the number and usage levels of smartphones consuming most of the bandwidth; and Verizon treats all spectrum as equal though some frequencies are more efficient than others.

Fitchard agrees, T-Mobile is the most efficient user of spectrum, while Verizon is probably the most inefficient. The thing is, T-Mobile doesn’t need evidence in the form of a computer science research professor, they just need to look at the idea that Verizon has gobs of AWS and 700 MHz licenses it isn’t using and in the case of the 700 MHz spectrum, wants to sell.

For T-Mobile’s part, they are using every drop of spectrum they have, going so far as to refarm their network removing room for its 2G network to make more room for its more efficient broadband network. Fitchard says it best when he argues that T-Mobile “couldn’t make a better argument than that to show its making the most of the limited resources it has.”

GigaOM via T-Mobile

Here is one interesting fact from Roberson’s research that I was thought was noteworthy:

  • T-Mobile’s customers are the most data intensive customers in the US wireless space, averaging close to 1.7GB per subscriber per month. That is almost 50% higher than Sprint’s 1.2GB, Verizon’s 902MB and AT&T’s 724MB of data usage.

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  • exeot

    I had no idea t-mobile users use the most data. Nice to know.

    • Get_at_Me

      bc their speeds are quick and theres no overage

      • Needanewphone

        For now. I have a sneaking suspicion that LTE will change the way they charge for data.

        • JBrowne1012

           No just default to HSPA+ is what i imagine happening..t-mo isn’t going to charge per gb like everyone else

        • dkbnyc

          AT&T already paid for all of us T-Mobilers to have LTE without any additional cost.  I just love that AT&T.  Raised rates on their own customers so we T-Mo’s can have LTE.   I knew AT&T wasn’t completely evil… just 98.999% evil. 

        • Xavier

           me too.

          i doubt any carrier will offer “unlimited” data eventually

          i think home internet providers are behind this whole throttling too

          the idea that internet at home isn’t necessary because you can get it from your phone or stream/tether from your phone, is something home internet providers definitely do not want happening.  so how else to control that…you throttle data.

  • UMA_Fan

    I’m honestly surprised Sprint users USE 1.2GB on average.  I would think with their slow speeds for the majority of their network it would be much lower.

    • Xavier

       it might be because out of ver and att, sprint is “unlimited”.

  • Winski

    WHO CARES ??

    If t-mumble doesn’t STOP with the reads, feeds, and speeds crap, they’ll just be a ‘ME-TOO SOONER THAN WE THINK!!!!

    • You must be a Verizon customer aren’t you?

      • More likely Verizon signs his checks.

    • dkbnyc

      Who cares?   Seems all of us do – except for you as is evident of you comment.  Don’t be upset because your carrier charges you out the wazoo for less service and slower speeds. Come on over to the light side.  

  • Verizon is and has been hoarding spectrum for one reason only. To prevent competitors from getting their hands on it. But Verizon Wireless is such a large company that nobody has opened their eyes to realize this. And nobody has put a stop to this monopolistic company!

    Verizon and AT&T are in collusion. They want to be the only ones… As consumers we all NEED to show them who’s boss, leave them for T-Mobile or Sprint!

  • Xavier

    so on avg…the 2 gb high speed is enough….on avg lol

  • FtKnoxTMO

    Average 1.7 GB per month?  I just spent a week at a campground, with 4 bar’s of 4G signal on my HTC Amaze 4G and averaged 17 kbps download speeds….hard to reach 1.7 GB of data at those rates. If yor are going to put in 4G radio’s in your cell sites, how about getting rid of the dial up back haul service.

    • Eric

      Do you usually go camping and try to use your Web to do as little camping as possible?

      4g is around 17mbps for my area. Not so much so in camping areas. Pretty sure Tmobile would spend their money in more cost efficient areas than in a campground area.


      Are you sure it did not just say G as in GPRS? That is about the only thing that can possibly provide that kind of low speed. 

      • Lani

        Since TmobileUSA introduced their 4G network, everyone learned that 4G is just a name for a network, nothing to do with speed.  That is one of the reasons Apple stopped promoting 4G on their iPad.  They got sued for the speed confusion related with saying 4G.

        In Los Angeles with full bars of 4G, I am lucky to get .57mbps DL and .55mbps UL.  4G slowspeeds in more areas.

        • TMOLOYAL

          There is a big/huge/massive difference between 17kbps and .57mbps. 

  • Wilma Flintstone

    Well of course a Tmobile Expert would say that.  I bet a Verizon Expert would say that Verizon is the most efficient.

    • justpassingby

      You didn’t read the article did you? “Computer science research professor at Illinois Institute of Technology Dennis Roberson “

  • jbhotnessmon

    a tmobile expert says that tmobile is the best … NO WAY STOP THE F****** PRESSES 

    • Justpassingby

      No not a tmobile expert a “Computer science research professor at Illinois Institute of Technology Dennis Roberson “

  • Winski

    AND, your subscriber customers are stilling fleeing like drowning rats…. WHY? NOBODY GIVES A CRAP about your reads, feeds and speeds…. They want a reliable product and today they don’t have what they want – or what they’ll PAY FOR ! Your pretty plastic landfill utensils or leather-bound bimbos ain’t doin the job bub….


      Wow!! David you really need to bring that dislike button back.