T-Mobile reports Super Bowl 50 network stats


Now that Super Bowl 50 has been played and T-Mobile’s ads have been revealed, it’s time to take a look at the Big Game and see how the carriers performed.

T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray today put up a blog post detailing T-Mo’s Super Bowl performance. Ray says that T-Mobile customers at Levi’s Stadium used five times more data than they did during last year’s Super Bowl, and T-Mo confirmed to me that its customers’ total data usage at the Big Game was 2.1TB. To compare, Verizon says its customers used 7TB of data during the game and AT&T reports that 5.2TB of data was used. I haven’t yet seen Sprint report its data usage for the game.

Of all the data used by T-Mobile customers at the game, 29 percent was for social media posts — including 166,700 Instagram photos and more than 119,250 Snapchat snaps — and another 29 percent was used for video. Some folks even took some time from the game to look for love, with Ray saying that “there were even a few hundred swipes on Tinder.”

@AskDes was also at the Super Bowl and took the time to record some T-Mobile speed tests to show how T-Mo’s network was holding up. Some of the numbers put up include download speeds of 91.47Mbps and 51.73Mbps. According to T-Mobile’s full testing, which happened at Levi’s Stadium during the game, Magenta had an average download speed of 39.5Mbps.


Finally, Neville Ray took some time to go after some network reports from RootMetrics and Nielsen. Ray says that in its next report, RootMetrics disabled Voice over LTE, which handles more than 40 percent of calling done on the T-Mobile network. Ray also takes aim at the drive tests performed by RootMetrics, saying that that type of testing “can’t replicate real customers’ real-world network experiences” and that by the time testing is done and the results are published, the data is months old.

Looking at Nielsen, which is the data used by Sprint for its claim that it has the fastest LTE network. Ray says that Nielsen testing looks at the experiences of a small group of customers based on how they use data, not on network performance.

Meanwhile, T-Mobile is continuing its #BallBusterChallenge, comparing its network to Verizon’s in different cities. It was in Santa Clara, Calif., last week — where Super Bowl 50 was played — and T-Mobile went undefeated. T-Mo also edged out Verizon to claim the fastest average 4G LTE download speeds in recent OpenSignal testing, also winning fastest 3G download speeds and best 3G latency in the same report.

Source: T-Mobile

Tags: ,

  • ThatsMrtoyou

    Way to go T-Mobile. Sprint averaged 669Kbps, a new record set

    • Jay J. Blanco


    • Anon

      Doesnt that graph show Sprint averaged – 38.1 Mbps
      dont buy seats at 5000feet

      • Clevenger23

        Depends, where these people complaining of slow speeds on the old WiMax or LTE? WiMax is all live where I live, and surprisingly fast. But I hear they are shutting it all off this year.

    • donnybee

      What part of this report (and the displayed Sprint numbers) makes you think they got less than 1Mbps download?

  • dontsh00tmesanta

    Nice job

  • vinnyjr

    To me the most impressive thing about T-Mobile’s LTE Network it has only been live for about 2 years. All the other Carriers have a 2 year jump on T-Mobile. To put this very impressive LTE Network up in such a short time and include Band 12 roll out, that is unbelievable. This time next year T-Mobile will have the same coverage map as Verizon and AT&T. In just a couple of short years T-Mobile has rolled out the fastest LTE Network in the Country.

    • Richard Roma

      The others have double the customers. In low socioeconomic areas where T-Mobile seems to be the biggest hit, speeds are the equivalent of the VZ he posted above.

  • besweeet

    Considering AT&T and Verizon had 2.5-3.5x as much overall usage, you’d think their AT&T would’ve suffered more.

    • master94

      They truck in extra trucks for big games. Verizon too, but AT&T has the better tech in them. So these test dont show real life examples cause those cell trucks wont be everywhere.

      • Clevenger23

        Even with the portable towers, Verizon still couldn’t handle it. At least AT&T did. And tmobile even though less data was used.
        Also here in Elkhart, when we have the 4H county fair, largest in the country, Verizon is the only one to put up a portable tower because they have week coverage in that area. I know they are the only ones because I work for the LEC and they are the only ones that need to connect. The funny part is, they use 10 T1’s for the tower. So 15mbps is max for the whole tower, to cover thousands of peoole at the fair. Seems ligit.

        • Melissa Cardenas

          when someone comes here to the forum in LA , verizon is the only network that cant handle it. THEY crap out bad , Madonna came here to perform a few months ago on her rebel heart tour i went with my coworkers it was FULL house .. two of my coworkers had verizon LTE/3G/1X wasnt working at ALL couldnt even send a text or call. while att and tmobile both had lte and their hspa was working fine for calls ,txt ,data dont know about sprint since none of us had sprint.

        • Ordeith

          and then visit Disneyland and learn that T-Mobile has daily occurrences of service outages as their network breaks under the load.

  • Bill

    T-Mobile used several cellspot near the entrance.

  • Jay Holm

    Well I wouldn’t brag about T-Mobile’s network in Houston. There are places here I can’t even get above 1mbps!!! It sure would be nice if CA actually got deoloyed, both the S6 & S7 are capable of CA!

    • steveb944

      Why not switch if it’s such a hindrance? I wouldn’t stand for that in this day and age. Then in the future when it’s better you can return.

      What’s CA?

      • Jay Holm

        CA is Carrier Aggregation, when multiple frequencies are combined to one signal creating a very, very fast data stream.

    • But….but…this wasn’t in Houston. Mentioned NOTHING ABOUT HOUSTON! So…so….BACK TO CALIFORNIA PLEEZ!

      • Jay Holm

        Umm…why the heck would I go there???

        • patt

          why the heck would anyone go to Houston? ;)

        • Jay Holm

          Cause it’s Texas that’s why, all that’s left of America in this post 2008 era…

        • Melissa Cardenas

          so who cares ABOUT texas…?????? CALI ALL DAY BBY ALL DAY AND NIGHT <3 Cali all the way!!

        • Omar Gonzalez

          Cali will be under water! YAY!

        • Nick

          I live in Houston for four years, I hated it, loving the DC metro area, yes to Mid Atlantic and my coverage is great.

  • steveb944

    Well considering the data, AT&T would be the winner as they had high use and maintained high speed, thereafter T-Mobile. Verizon showed it’s colors. GSM wins this one.

    • matt

      umm, all LTE is GSM, duh. you cant have LTE without GSM

      • steveb944

        I meant in terms of how the networks are known to be here in the States from their history. 2 GSM, 2 CDMA.

  • livinlife

    What’s really sad is those people who were at the Super Bowl, and were on their phones…

    • dtam

      the game was pretty boring

      • flyonawall

        People who see great defensive teams perform well in games often think it’s “boring”. Watching a defensive team execute their game plan is just as exciting to others.
        If you want to see a 65-59 scoring game…you might want to check out the Arena League or watch BIG12 Conference in college football where defense isn’t really…..hmmm how do I put this….valued?

    • master94

      There was thousands there so each person didnt really use that much data when you think about it.

    • AS118

      To be fair, there’s enough downtime to be on your phone without missing anything.

  • I would be happy if T-Mobile was as good as Verizon at the Superball in my area. I’m happy they got positive publicity, but they should focus on speed in real world situations. Sometimes I can’t even stream music on Google Music, let alone stream a video, and I live near the 4th largest city in Texas.

    • Jay Holm


      • No, actually, it’s El Paso. My bad. I didn’t realize it was 6th largest now.

        • Omar Gonzalez

          I live in El Paso and I never really complained about the data speeds. Of course once you start leaving El Paso County your service just disappears. I think the reason the speeds were awesome at the game was because it was probably on Band 12 no? EP doesn’t have that…yet.

        • Clevenger23

          Band 12 is only for deep penetration, not speed. The 700 mhz AWS will not handle nearly that speed. Maybe up to 20 Mbps if your lucky.

        • Omar Gonzalez

          Well deep penetration is exactly what El Paso needs haha. For the people who don’t have WiFi at their workplace. Like I said, I don’t complain about the speeds at all but they could be better I’m sure.

        • Luis

          I’m from w/o paso and typically get 60 to 90 mbps. But I live 200 yards from a tower.

        • I live in Sunland Park, NM but work in West El Paso. Right now I have a ping of 89ms, 0.55Mbps down 0.36Mbps up. Unfortunately, we don’t have Wi-Fi at work. Sometimes it gets so slow that I can’t stream music. Today it took me 26 minutes to buffer a 17mb video on YouTube. I keep T-Mobile because of the unlimited data, but sometimes I get frustrated because I can’t use it.

  • master94

    This is great but lately speeds in NYC(Lower Manhattan and downtown Brooklyn) have been garbage. I have full bars but my speeds are hovering around 3 megs(120ms ping) and building penetration went from acceptable to non existent. That being said the service is great in Queens. (45megs, 22 ms ping)

    • Jason Caprio

      I feel your pain. I work in downtown Trenton, NJ and speeds rarely exceed 1Mbps. I’ve complained to T-Force multiple times about my abysmal speeds on my Note 5 and they keep giving me the runaround saying their engineers are working on it.

  • VernonDozier

    T-Mobile’s ideal customer can’t afford $3,000 superbowl tickets. He’s probably on the network all by himself.

    • Wezi427

      Where were you seated at the Superbowl?

      • patt

        he is the guy that thinks Verizon network is premium :D let’s hope he is enjoying caps :D I left Verizon but there are still 5 lines on that account just family members. The account has 130$/30GB plan “Verizon” thinks this is such amazing deal even though it’s half off. I already used 21GB myself and still have 5 days in cycle. Paying 40+TAX (3rd line add-on) on the 100$/2 line plan. Each other line is +40$ which is what I have.

        • Wezi427

          I used to be with Verizon and it was great, but I’m getting the same coverage with faster speeds and cheaper price with T-Mobile.

        • patt

          Exactly which is why I don’t get why Verizon army thinks T-Mobile is not good. Funniest reactions I read was if you have tmobile you are poor lol. In fact on Verizon I was paying 38$ for my line after taxes etc and with with T-Mobile I pay 47$ after taxes for unlimited everything. It’s called being smart and not over paying. I used 21 gigs this month as of now which would cost me 120$/ for 20GB on Verizon plan + 20$ Line Access Fee + taxes and VZW bs fees.

  • Clevenger23

    I wish my area had fast LTE. if I am lucky, maybe 20mbps on a good night at 2 am. During normal hours, 5 to 7 max. Where is all this LTE speed they keep rambling about? When I get to 20Gb used I get slowed to 100kbps. I called to find out why, and I get told my tower is congested. BTW the 14gb hotspot, counts toward the 20Gb limit, and all your binge streaming does as well. But I go over a city and I am no longer restricted to slow service. Mind you I am slowed to that 100kbps speed even at 2 am. I work third shift and use my hotspot at work and around town because I travel through the city for my job. But if that tower is congested all night long, in a city where I am lucky to see 10 cars on the road from 1am to 4am then they have a real problem. That tower should have maybe 20 active people on it if that during those hours. How does that congest the tower? Elkhart Indiana is where they need to fix this. Not just one tower, all 4 are supposedly congested.

    • SirStephenH

      Unlimited plans on T-Mobile have a soft cap of 21GB after which they deprioritize (AKA throttle) your connections when connected to congested towers. Hotspot, services included in Music Freedom and Binge On, and certain speed test services DO NOT count against this cap.

      • Clevenger23

        then explain to me why when i called in last month to complain about slow speed, my phone usage was only at 15Gb, but i had used the 14GB hotspot and i use Pandora everyday, so my actual usage was about 34Gb, and that is what the rep told me on the phone was the reason i was being, “De-prioritized” down to about 100Kbps. He said i should get at least 196Kbps, but i couldn’t even open the google home search page it was so bad. Which my bigger issue is how the hell is the tower even remotely congested between 1-4am when there are maybe 10-20 people out. my city is pretty well shut down at night. plows, emergency services, gas stations, and McDonalds is about all still open. I am a Network Tech keeping the internet and phone working and doing upgrades to the network at night, so people don’t know i am doing my job, but they claim it is congested during those hours by other users.
        Back to my point, I was told be the rep and his manager because i thought the same as what you are saying here, and they both told me i am wrong. ALL DATA used PERIOD, counts toward your so called “Soft Cap”. just not towards you limited high speed data that you pay for. in theory if you had a 6GB plan that had the 14GB Hotspot included, and using Binge and music streaming, you could hit that cap before you even used all of your 6GB and you would be throttled.

        On a second note, I drove down one city and i have full speed back, getting 20-30Mbps. I called in and said why can i get full speed here and not by my home, and that was where the explanation came in that it was because that towers down in that city where not congested but the all of the towers (4 if i remember correctly) back in my city that i live in are congested. as you can tell be only having 4 towers for my city its not a big place. but still.

        • 9to5Slavery

          The lies they tell you. CS isn’t worthy

  • brandon

    they should show these stats at the end of verizon’s new commercial with the people running towards the “big” door.


  • Richard Roma

    Lets try the same speed test at an airport in CA.

    T-Mobile clearly setup a portable cell for this event.

    • nps_ca

      LAX has improved greatly last few months on the South side of the airport (TBIT, T4, T5, T6 – must be DAS backhaul in other terminals. This has gone from 1MB and under to 18MB + (this is why assuming Backhaul issues). No issues at SNA where we get 40MB+. TMO knows all the backhaul starved locations – issue is getting backhaul in is a pain in the rear. It’s not the cost which they are willing to spend it’s the planning, permitting, etc that takes ages.

      • Clevenger23

        around here they hired a Fiber company called Zayo and have them run the fiber to the towers and then they come to my company to connect to a Backbone. they seem to be going with EVP Fiber services, which makes since because it is the easiest to change speeds on. unlike the older sonet OC services that required physical changes to change your speed.
        Which is was Verizon and AT&T used in this area was Sonet OC services. so for them to upgrade would be a pain and a night time job because it will cause an outage while its upgraded. or they will have to install new network equipment and pay for additional fiber connections and pay for both services until the migrate over…. T-Mobile did the better option.

    • SirStephenH

      “T-Mobile clearly setup a portable cell for this event.”

      They all do it…

  • TylerCameron

    That graph is definitely flawed.
    Everyone knows Speint LTE is utterly incapable of going beyond 10mbps on the best day. Hell, you rely lucky to get modem speed on sprint.

    • flyonawall

      lol you’re right Sprint is terrible.

    • Panzer

      To be fair SF is one of Sprint’s strongest markets.

  • joemail

    enough bragging tmobile, lets get the in building signal penetration going.
    band12 is very weak in NYC. havent had service in the basement of my building since leaving sprint. was excited about band12, but it’s not all that cracked up to me.

    anyone know when it will be fully live?
    midtown manhattan

    • flyonawall

      hehee, you said “penetration”.

      why don’t you switch to WiFi calling in the basement? if you don’t work down there…do you really need it for a few mins in the basement? (just trying to clear it up that’s all)

      • joemail

        haha good one.

        i go to the gym in the basement. wifi is locked to work network only.

        • patt

          you don’t need service when at the gym ;)

    • TechnoRealz

      hey joemail – going to be in the big apple this weekend – how’s the overall TMO performance around midtown/chinatown/ tourist spots?

      • Marc

        You shouldn’t have a problem whatsoever. Had generally great performance in the Big Apple.

    • AJ2

      They just spent over $10 million on Super Bowl ads so thats where the money went

    • mikeZo6

      even when fully live it not good at all

  • Ordeith

    meanwhile, T-Mobile where I was couldn’t seem to keep up with demand. 4G went to edge which went to no service as the game progressed.

  • jonathan3579

    I love T-Mobile and all, but one of Verizon’s guys kept posting photos of his speeds compared to T-Mobile and calling out John Legere to meet him and it never happened. I guess that goes to show all his antics can only be done on Twitter. If he was that confident in speeds, he should’ve met up with the guy and embarrassed him. Meh.

    • patt

      I saw that too. I wonder at what times they both were posting speed test it really depends when was it super crowded or kind of crowded. Anyway no matter what speeds both they had. Unlimited is what matters :D

      • kgraham182

        Well, AT&T has unlimited back. Although I have unlimited, I doubt more 5% of T-Mobile customers care about that plan judging by everybody love of BingeOn here.

        • patt

          Of course but not everyone wants to sign up for TV service that will only be cheap for 1 year and then go up a lot. Binge on is not bad when I get a LTE tablet hoping for some iPad with B12 I will for sure keep binge on, on a tablet. On a phone I disabled it long time ago.

        • walt

          just wifi tether your band 12 iphone 6s to your ipad. it wont use binge-on data if you have binge-on enabled. problem solved

        • patt

          Yup I see what you mean but I have it off lol but since it’s easy to turn and off maybe.. It might be smart to do that. Thanks

      • jonathan3579

        It seemed like he tried to call him out on multiple occasions and even waited around to see if John would should to put his money where his mouth was. I was really hoping he’d bite but he didn’t even respond. :/

    • BobbieDooley

      That’s how you know your watching an ad. People and human beings are interactive. Ads and marketing will push forward (sometimes forcefully) a marketing message or slogan. Also, T-Mobile isn’t going to publicize a speed test which is actually on-par with T-Mobile. To stack the deck in favor of T-Mobile, maybe the phone’s LTE is turned off..?

      Speeds are way off what I get at home. But results could be duplicated if Legere ran Verizon’s test in the Levi’s Stadium men’s bathhouse (often has thick, hard concrete walls) and T-Mobile’s test in the stadium. Perhaps even use a screen-shot.

      Either way, we don’t know the methodology; and we likely will never know, because no one can verify that even the picture is “live” and not a photo/screen capture. Also, we don’t know how many times T-Mobile tested Verizon’s network until it got a result it liked enough to advertise on twitter.