T-Mobile has many more 5G cities than AT&T and Verizon, says new Ookla report

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Last month a report said that T-Mobile has the best 5G availability of the major US carriers, and now another report has echoed that sentiment.

Ookla, maker of the popular Speedtest app, today shared a new report on US mobile networks. In it, Ookla says that T-Mobile had the “majority” of the 5G deployments in US cities, offering service in 5,013 cities. AT&T had 237 deployments and Verizon had 39. Ookla says that in all, there were 5,164 US cities with 5G deployments as of July 5.

While it doesn’t have nearly as many 5G cities, Verizon does offer the fastest 5G speeds in the cities where you can get the signal. Verizon posted a 5G Speed Score of 870.50 in this Ookla report while AT&T was a distant second with 78.68. Sprint and T-Mobile finished third and fourth with scores of 64.82 and 64.26, respectively.

As has been noted before, T-Mobile and Verizon have taken two different strategies when it comes to 5G deployment. T-Mo has focused on coverage, rolling out low-band 5G which can go longer distances and better penetrate buildings but isn’t much faster than LTE, while Verizon has opted for mmWave which is super fast but can’t reach very far.

T-Mo has been working to speed up its 5G network using the 2.5GHz airwaves it got from Sprint, and it says the 2.5GHz 5G coverage is offering average download speeds of 330Mbps.

T-Mobile fared better when taking into consideration all tests taken on 5G devices, not just those taken on a 5G signal. This includes speeds from LTE and older network technologies. Here, AT&T finished first here with a 5G Capable Speed Score of 57.52 while T-Mobile got a score of 49.22. Verizon was next with a score of 47.23 and Sprint got a score of 44.30.

Other areas in the Ookla report where T-Mobile performed well include Consistency Score, where it finished second with 79.2 percent; Latency, where it came in first with 31ms; and the overall Fastest Providers, where it finished second behind AT&T with a Speed Score of 33.69.

To check out the full report for yourself, including a info on the fastest carriers in the 100 most populous US cities, hit the link below.

Source: Ookla

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  • Joe

    I don’t think it’s fair at the current stage of 5G deployment to compare the carriers. T-mobiles current 5G that is offered in most places in 600 mhz which is not really going to break any records but will help them say they have 5G. Verizon has lightning fast speeds but you need to be in the right corner of the street with the right weather to work. I personally think when t-mobiles 3 layer 5G is implemented more broadly they will have the Superior overall network interns of speed and reliability, but right now no one is winning any prizes for 5G.

    • Mike

      Verizon will be there, especially with more frequency auctions coming up this year. There coverage can’t be beat. The thing about them doing mmwave first, is probably done to fill in areas that are poor.. Now once they switch there nationwide 700mhz and 850mhz to 5g watch the headlines. That 600mhz ain’t much different than 700mhz held by Verizon and ATT.

      • Shaun Michalak

        Not if you have the spectrum to use it properly.. I think that is the problem.. T-Mobile did get “some” 700mhz, but not enough to use it properly, because there just was not enough there to do it.. That is where 600mhz comes in.. That they have enough to use it properly

        • Mike

          Looking on my spectrum map I see T-Mobile hold 10×10 across the nation and some areas have 15×15. The thing that is good, Tmobile is leasing other companies 600 mhz spectrum for a while.. Now more bandwidth will help with speeds a little bit. I think Tmobile still has to modernize many of there sites.

        • Shaun Michalak

          Actually, over most of the country, t-Mobile only has 10mhz max of spectrum in the 700mhz range.. I would say that at least 15% of the country, they have no 700mhz frequency though.In comparison, AT&T has anywhere from about 15 to 25mhz of constant coverage of 700mhz across the whole country, not just 85% of it like T-Mobile does.. That is why i said not enough to use it properly.. You need constant across the county coverage, and enough bandwidth to support customers, which T-Mobile just did not have, or really use, and install it for good constant coverage.

        • Mike

          Well Tmobile is trying with the 600 mhz to catch up and get more of the country covered with signal. With all the upgrades they do, I’m sure they can get rid of old roaming agreement with other companies like ATT. Tmobile is just using this expansion as a media tool to show better nation wide coverage..In the end dropping roaming agreements will save them money.

        • Shaun Michalak

          I would like to say yes to getting rid of the roaming agreements.. But the fact is, while they do have a LOT better coverage, I like the idea that where they do not have coverage, I can still jump off of AT&T towers for some coverage.. If T-mobile had better coverage, then I would not mind so much.. But in a lot of rural areas.. and in places like Virgina, etc, they still do not have their coverage up to snuff to fully stand on their own with their own coverage.. Because of that, I think they still need that roaming agreement to keep up coverage.. But at the same time, I could say the same thing about AT&T in places too..

        • Mike

          Guess I’ve been lucky to never roam. Everywhere I’ve been has been Tmobile coverage. Right now I know Alaska is roaming and out west, so I’m guessing over time there network will get better.. Eventually they will lower roaming agreements.

        • Shaun Michalak

          I think part of the reason why i get to see all the roaming is for one reason.. I prefer not to use highays unless I have to.. So when I travel, I tend to take a lot of the state routes.. That allows me to see more of the country, small towns, etc as I travel, and I find that 100 times more enjoyable then trying to get from point A to point B as fast as possible.. Yea, it takes longer to get where I am going.. But in my opinion, it is well worth it.. But at the same time, that is why I see so many of the dead zones in their coverage when I travel.

        • Mike

          So you actually get to see how there rural coverage is by traveling the back roads. I’d guess you have seen improvement of coverage over time? Didn’t the government give out money to carriers who expanded coverage to rural areas?

        • Shaun Michalak

          Yes, I have seen improvements over time.. I have traveled most of the east half of the country, from Alabama, all the way up to Michigan, and pretty much everything east of there.. The improvements over the past 6 years have been huge.. This is not to say that they do not have room for improvement.. They have a lot of that.. 6 Years ago, I would say that I kept an actual T-Mobile signal about 10% of the time while traveling.. I spent more time jumping off of AT&T then T-Mobile.. Now, depending on where I go, I would guess that I am on average, staying on T-Mobiles service about 85% of the time now.. Sometimes a little more, sometimes a little less..

          a couple of years ago, I took a trip from Erie, PA to Chicago.. I traveled on side routes, like route 20.. The 2 lane roads (one lane each way) that goes through small towns.. I traveled that way about 90% of the way there, and back. I was actually amazed at how much I stayed on T-Mobile towers at the time..

          As for the money part.. Not in my area.. That money was used for places that have little to no coverage already by any of the carriers.. Most of the places that I have been are not in that list.. They may already have coverage through AT&T or Verizon.. So T-Mobile adding service when one or both of the other to companies already have service there which disqualifies that government handout for building out coverage. Basically, most of those places are either in places like Maine, or in the west where coverage is lacking from all carriers..

        • Can testify to rural Virginia not having great coverage from T-Mobile (at least as of early March).

          US Route 17 has some poor to no coverage in a number of spots between Winchester and Fredericksburg with the big one around Sky Meadow State Park. (Missed some important calls on that route when I was moving from West Virginia panhandle to Hampton Roads.)

          (Of course I didn’t have B71 phone at the time (just got a B71 capable phone in May) so maybe it’s better than what I experienced coverage wise.)

          But I agree with you that roaming should still be in place as a “just in case” you have no coverage with your carrier.

        • Shaun Michalak

          My niece used to be down in Virginia.. I would go down and see her and would take 79 south to 68, then go east to cumberland, get off there and take 51 down through paw paw wv, over to 522, and down to winchester.. I would say that from the time I left the PA line, that whole segment of the trip, I would get coverage about 40% of the time the last time I went down.. Before I left the PA line on 79, I kept good coverage, and after I got down to winchester, I had good coverage the rest of the way.. But that part of the trip.. Way too much dead zones.. Maybe they did more upgrades since I was down there last, about 1 1/2 or so years ago.. But i know at that time, their coverage sucked and I did a lot of either no service, or jumping off of AT&T during that part.

        • Shaun Michalak

          I went from comberland md down route 51 down through paw paw, and then down to winchester virginia, and I can tell you that most of that route has little T-Mobile coverage.. Maybe 15%?? That was about 2 years ago, but I doubt that too much has changed in the last 2 years to make that big of a difference.

      • They would have to decomission 3G before ever trying to switch lowland to 5G

        • Mike

          They will use DSS, so to share spectrum between the modes. Not sure who has 3g left? I know 3g don’t exist for Tmobile here.

  • Joe

    T-mobiles 5G game plane is 3 layers. Foundation layer is 600 mhz (curently deployed in man locations, mid layer is 2.5 Ghz, and top layer (for very dense city and indoor antennas) mmWave.

    • Sharti24

      That will take YEARS to implement.

      True, you dont need mmW in rural areas but Tmobile is still operating a 2G/3G network and we’re talking about deploying three layers of 5G?

      • Joe

        They already have done the triple layer in 1 or 2 city’s so yeah it may take 5 years to do this in all major metro areas but nothing is fast in this world.

    • Mike

      Guess rural won’t see that top layer anytime soon, let alone seeing the mid layer. They will need more towers in rural areas.

  • Jason Caprio

    At least in my area, Verizon’s LTE layer cake is performing amazing. I’m hard pressed to get a speed test under 100mbit/sec everywhere. 700MHz + 850MHz + 1900MHz + 2100/1700MHz. (Band 13, 5, 2, and 4/66). T-Mobile’s 5G is in more cities, but means nothing if it is no better than 4G.

    • slybacon

      T-Mobile’s 5G network today is comparable to Verizon’s 4G LTE network in 2008. It needs time to mature.

  • Mike

    Yep I see how T-Mobile performed well for Consistency Score…Here in Crestview, Florida I consistently get less than 2 mbps for a download speed while only getting .99 upload… So yes I see how they got awarded for consistency. Far as the other tests go, I just don’t see it here.
    Now Verizon is doing good, because they actually are leading with a more appropriate 5g speed.

    • marque2

      Yes Verizon has speed on 3 city blocks in two towns. Just don’t go indoors and be careful not to have your head between the tower and phone or you will get no signal. Other than that, they are #1

      • Mike

        Well I can barely get any speed out of a download test now… so when they add 600 mhz someday I’m not expecting anything superior. The thing about Verizon with the high band is the way they choose, it’s just opposite Tmobile, so thats how they get the speed.. I laugh because tmobile will end up putting those same high bands on later, so for now, sure there is more coverage, but those speeds ain’t much better then LTE.

        • slybacon

          It’s funny because Verizon chose the low-band 700 MHz rollout of 4G LTE in 2008 and they became dominate. Now, they are setting up a high-band 5G network like T-Mobile had 4G LTE in 2008 to 2015. Good luck.

        • Mike

          Well it won’t be long when both Verizon and ATT start using there 700 and 850 mhz for 5g, and that will make them catch up quick. Can’t imagine the top 2 will keep lingering.

        • slybacon

          They will have to shut down their LTE networks first, then install new equipment, then deploy 5G, test it and optimize it. All while their customers have no LTE network. Doesn’t seem plausible.

        • Shaun Michalak

          Not only that, but I highly doubt that they will shut down any of their 4G network.. 5G is great and all, but the fact is, it is going to take years for them to get even half of their customers to upgrade to a 5G phone.. Heck, some of their customers are still using 10 year old 3G phones still.

        • marque2

          Most of the phones being sold today, with all the 5g hype are not 5g phones. Maybe when Apple finally jumps in, 5g will catch on more. Of course Apple fanbois will then all claim Apple invented 5g.

        • Shaun Michalak

          That is true.. Especially outside of mmWave frequencies.. Even though AT&T says 5GE, it makes me wonder if that is actually on there just for show.. Especially after looking at their description on their site saying just double the speeds on 5GE.. Considering that their normal speeds were just a fraction of what 4G is capable of, it really makes me wonder if it is nothing more then a bait and switch deal, where their really is nothing different from their 4G service, and their 5GE, especially considering the speeds available..

        • Mike

          Heard possibly September for a Apple event… maybe that will be a new I phone?

        • Mike

          5g is gonna come real quick… mm wave will be the slower part because of all the new sites that all the carriers will need to add. Rural areas will still have to wait the longest, if they even get in..

        • Mike

          Well they will get people to switch, they will figure a way to get new phones, at a price of course, into there hands.. I can’t get 3g here, so not sure when all 3g will be shut down?

        • Shaun Michalak

          It depends on the carrier.. Here is what I have found..

          “AT&T has a very concrete schedule for turning off its 3G network. The end date is set for February 2022”

          “The new end date for Verizon’s 3G is the end of 2020, according to the carrier’s website.”

          My guess is with T-Mobile and Sprint.. Well, T-Mobile really did not have squat for 3G installed anyways.. and Sprint.. Well, Sprint would have their 3G installed on their 800mhz spectrum, which is to be sold to Dish after 3 years, so they really have nothing to lose or gain by leaving it up.. But at the same time, any towers that are doubled up, that are sold to Dish will obviously have the 3G service shut down almost immediately.. They would have to if it is not their tower or lease any more..

        • Mike

          I read they are going to use DSS so that both LTE and 5g can use the sectioned off bandwidth, so it can happen anytime… just read Verizon tested 5g stand alone, so these power house companies of ATT and Verizon are not just sitting around. The old saying who gets the last laugh.

        • slybacon

          It’s actually who laughs the longest. They are all working on SA 5G. T-Mobile will have it this year they said. So it won’t rely on legacy technologies like NSA.

        • Mike

          They will all be doing the same thing in the long run..Verizon just got done doing SA test, so it will be coming soon. Verizon has the best tower locations, that why they build it right to begin with, the others are playing catch up.

        • Shaun Michalak

          It all depends on where you are at.. I am not saying that Verizon has bad coverage.. far from it.. But at the same time, not all places have better service with verizon.. You go down to Albion here, and Verizon is 2 bars at best.. T-Mobile and AT&T both have 4 bars minimum there.

        • Mike

          I’d guess they will fix towers along the way too. For me with Tmobile I get 4 bars, but there data is so dang slow, 1 meg upoad with .65 upload. I’ve called it in many times, and the same old dance is told that it’s fixed. Thing is, it’s only 5×5 band 2 or band 12.

        • Shaun Michalak

          It was not much better where I live.. Before the upgrades, I could not even get a speed test done most of the time.. That is one thing nice.. Where T-Mobile has had little to no mid or low band for use, they no will have a lot more to install so they can fix those problems in those areas, like yours..

          My guess is that they say that it is fixed, but pretty much know that their is not too much they can do with the limited amount of frequency that they have in the area.. Now they have all that extra mid band, all that low band, and sprints 2.5ghz, I bet once they upgrade your area, you will see a huge difference.

        • Mike

          They have the bandwidth but they won’t put it on..I’ve actually complained to them that 1 meg download is crap, but the same old song and dance occurs without a solution to the problem..what they do here is have their signal configured in a directional pattern which leaves no mid band to 1/4 the neiborhoods. All the speed in on b4 because it’s 20×20. But they continue not to fix the problem. I sure hope they spend some money and upgrade this junk.

        • Shaun Michalak

          They do that around here too.. There are places where they will have an antenna going north, west, and south, but nothing going east.. But going east, there is no coverage in the area, and looking at the tower, you can see that there is not even an antenna going in that direction.. I looked at the tower which is how I know.. Or places where they have antenna pointing in the direction, but have them pointed in a way that the signal only goes a short distance, and after you reach that distance, nothing.. I can name a few places like that around here..It drives me crazy when you lose signal going into rural areas, knowing that the tower is only 1 mile away, and know that you have no signal.. Not because of no tower, but because of some crazy way that it was installed, that really makes no sense on why they installed the coverage like that..

        • slybacon

          Verizon has the least dense tower configuration, which is bad for 5G mmWave and mid-band.

        • Mike

          I’d figure Verizon is a adding to there network as well, they need to so they can keep charging for those high priced plans they got.

        • Brandon

          I have this strong feeling that AT&T is going to surpass Verizon for overall coverage on voice and data.

        • Mike

          I wouldn’t bet on that.. Verizon isn’t just sitting around. I’m sure they are upgrading just like the others. But ATT could if they would spend some money.

        • Mike

          Well they have 7 years of tower use from Tmobile, so dish might be smart to just go 5g from the beginning. Most of the Sprint sites here were already upgraded, so Dish will get some nice equipment.

        • Shaun Michalak

          That is what they did in the past. They wait until the new technology comes out, they wait for someone else to develop it, and fix the bugs and glitches, and then they come in and start using the technology after someone else does all the work for them..

          Here is the real question though.. How will they stack up to T-Mobile, after T-Mobile gets everything done?? Before the merger, both AT&T and Verizon had more spectrum to work with.. T-Mobile had little to no low band before their 600mhz buy.. Now they have the 600mhz, over 50% more 1900mhz midband, and all that 2.5ghz to use.. Add in all the extra towers, which means more coverage, from the Sprint merger, and it makes you wonder if they are going to catch up, or are they still going to be playing catch up??

        • Mike

          Tmobile will have it good when all complete, but they do have to give Dish many of the old Sprint towers as part of the merger deal, so not sure what percentage they can keep? Far as 600 mhz goes, I see that Tmobile has 10×10 only with a few exceptions of 15×15.. the other thing is they have a user agreement to use other carriers 600 mhz for a while. Now compare that to Verizon’s 20×20 700 mhz and there 850 mhz which is theres, a flip of the computer programming they can be live with 5g too. So guess the race is on, whoever has nation wide all layers at once will be the leader.

        • Shaun Michalak

          They are giving Dish the towers that double up with their coverage.., if T-Mobile and Sprint have service on the same tower, there is no need to keep that extra spot for themselves, and that is what Dish is getting.

        • Mike

          I believe there was a set amount of towers they have to turn over. Actually I’ll say it’s tower space because they don’t own all the towers. Locally here Sprint had upgraded all there towers while Tmobile had not…So Dish is going to get some nice tower equipment locally. I will enjoy what Boost and Dish will be able to accomplish. They will be able to bundle

        • Shaun Michalak

          As far as I am aware, from what I read, T-Mobile put it out there for them to get those towers to help them out in getting started.. This helped both companies since their were agreements for keeping use of the towers for a certain length of time (contracts for leasing), because it would let Dish take them over where T-Mobile did not need them.. But at the same time, it let Dish get a huge amount of towers to start out with, that they did not have to go through all the hassle of making contracts too.. So it was a win win for both sides.. That is why I doubt that it was a government regulation that pushed that part.. It was clearly in both parties best interests to do it like that.

        • Mike

          Verizon aint sitting around, they are putting DSS in place, they will have 5g on pretty fast for there 700 and 850 mhz. Once they do that it will golden while Tmobile is playing catch up cake.

        • marque2

          Yeah but what is more useful for customers now? I get 5g now in difficult to reach places. Verizon customers except in a stadium somewhere get what? And apparently Verizon has slowed the roleout because it isn’t working as expected.

          Seems like the low to high approach of t-mobile was a better choice than high to low of Verizon. Tmobile will have a solid low and mid band out providing real data before Verizon gets their, only for show, mmw network working nationwide.

        • Mike

          The trouble is it will take Tmobile a while to roll everything out.. I doubt they will even get mid band rolled out in rural.areas that they just turned on with 600mhz.. They are only using 600 as a way of showing roll out of low speed 5g. Verizon will be there, they are not just going to sit around, they will get that DSS going, and all of a sudden they will have 5g on there 700 and 850 mhz. Verizon has high priced plans and they ain’t gonna sit around and let Tmobile take there core customers.

        • marque2

          They have been allowing tmobile to take their customers for years. Not sure what would change about them now. Granted TMobile may lose their edge with the new management.

        • Mike

          Verizon still has there core people and buisness accounts. I’ve seen businesses buy up many lines of service at once..So basically they still have followers who don’t mind paying those over the top plans. Most people know Verizon for a reliable network that does work everywhere.

    • Shaun Michalak

      Yea, lets name an area that has no 5G and has not been upgraded yet, as the sound example for their network.. lol

  • Mike

    Yep, 5g will be better down the road… It’s good to see more cities are covered with signal, but just having low band only in these new areas won’t get close to Verizon’s speed. It’s gonna be a while till you see other bands in rural areas. So 5g low band speed is not much different than what ATT called 5gE.

  • Glenn Gore

    As the article states, T-Mobile has been making improvements to their 600 Mhz-based 5G since launching it back in December. I can attest to this around here, because after launch, it was rare to see anything faster then 12-15 Mbps down on 5G while you could get 45-50 at the same location on LTE. But the other day I took a reading in the same location and got 150 Mbps down and 46.9 up, a HUGE improvement, with the same 45 Mbps on LTE, so they haven’t reduced LTE performance while making 5G better, which I was concerned about. Plus, they have upgraded an additional 2 sites in the area over the past 6 months with 5G that extends out a good 15 miles from the sites, even in hilly country. These are primarily rural areas that I have been testing, and cities of 15,000 or less, so T-Mobile is doing a very good job at servicing places of all sizes, not just the biggest urban areas.

    • Mike

      I believe the government has been offering funds to carriers for the purpose of getting signal to rural areas, so it’s great to read how good the signals have been working for you.

      • Glenn Gore

        I found the same level of improvement in another 5G area yesterday, so it seems like T-Mobile is working on making Band 71 better overall, and that’s great for everyone.

  • Shaun Michalak

    Right now, I think T-Mobile just has way too much on their plate, trying to play catch up.. They do not even get one thing done, and they get more things that they need to do.. They need to get the rest of band 71 rolled out, they need to get Sprints towers converted over, they need to get that extra bandwidth installed on T-Mobile towers, where there is no Sprint towers, they need to get more towers installed to fix coverage gaps, they need to get coverage to meet the agreements for the merger, and more.. They start one thing to start fixing things, and then add 2 ad 3 and 4 more things to that list, before they get the first one done.. and what if they get some spectrum at the auctions later this year?? add more to that list.. But once they do get it done, and all those things caught up, I bet they will have one worthy network..

    • Glenn Gore

      There is definite risk that T-Mobile may find themselves unable to follow through on some promises and upgrades. Or at least have a hard time doing it. During this pandemic, it can be difficult if not impossible to source equipment and materials for new construction and upgrades, let alone the labor required to install that equipment.

      They are starting in a good position with the large amount of low-band 5G already in place, but a lot of that is not too impressive when measurements are taken. I suspect that not all of the problem is related to the capacity of low-band 5G and it has more to do with a problem the cellular carriers have always had, which is the lack of adequate backhaul in place at each and every cell site.

      When LTE was introduced, the carriers regaled us with what the new technology could do, but when they turned it on, users found that not much had changed from the days of 3G and “4G”/HSPA. That was due to the fact that a lot of cell sites were still serviced with copper-based T1 lines that simply could not provide anything close to what LTE was capable of with data. It has taken years and years for that to change, and it is still a huge problem for all the carriers in a huge part of the country.

      Fiber providers have been very busy in the past several years running new fiber to cell sites, but there are plenty of places where it is just impossible to get fiber to outlying sites. T-Mobile has created setups where fiber is fed to one central site and then they utilize a hub & spoke system of microwave to outlying sites, to spread that bandwidth around, which can work quite well. It is a very quick and easy way to get very high speed data out to sites that are far from a fiber trunk line.

      I have high hopes that T-Mobile will make good progress. I sure hope so.

      • Shaun Michalak

        I agree.. You also have to take into consideration, when they first ran fiber lines, did they install fiber lines that just supported what they needed back then, or did they install the fiber lines for future upgrades.. It would not surprise me if the first round of fiber lines that they ran, way back when, were only single or double fiber lines, and not say 24 line fiber runs.. That could cause a kink in the network just as much as copper runs too.. Of course, I do not know what they ran back then, with their initial networks, but considering that they really did not have the frequency for the bandwidth back then, and were not too hyped up on making a network like they have today, it would not surprise me if they just installed closer to what they needed, and not a lot extra in fiber lines..

        • Glenn Gore

          I’m sure a lot of them just built what they thought they needed at the time, but hopefully that type of thinking is no longer predominant. I have seen great improvement in AT&T’s data rates in rural areas, a VERY long-term problem for them over the years, and now I am seeing data rates on T-Mobile’s Band 71 5G jump dramatically in some locations, so they are working on that as well.

          I ran a Speedtest in another T-Mobile 5G town yesterday that has never been more than 5-10 Mbps down/2 up before, and it resulted in 185 down and 45 up, a HUGE improvement. It’s not millimeter-wave good but it’s usable indoors and 15 miles from the site, which is FAR more useful than millimeter-wave will ever be.

          As more and more 5G-capable devices are sold, those improvements will have to be made to support them, it will be exciting to watch.

        • Shaun Michalak

          The only problem when it comes to AT&T is.. Were the upgrades installing more spectrum to use, for faster speeds?? Or were they upgrading 3G rural towers for 4G?? That is a big problem with AT&T.. They leave way too many towers on old tech, and refuse to upgrade it, and by the time they do, you are 2 versions down the road, and it seems like a huge upgrade because they are basically only installing upgrades every other version.. Then they add in all that new spectrum and frequencies that they have gained in that last 10 or so years, and maga speed boost.. All those towers that are no better then 2 or 3G still is plenty proof of that..

        • Glenn Gore

          In the case of AT&T’s site just outside town here, a year ago they upgraded it from 2G, only on Band 5, to LTE+ with Bands 4,5, and 66. Over the years, they never bothered to upgrade the site to 3G or “4G”/HSPA, waiting until they did their full nationwide 2G shutdown to do anything and go straight to LTE+. Pioneer and T-Mobile had LTE here years before AT&T did.

          As you say, that was normal AT&T operation for a non-urban site, and there are plenty of AT&T sites still on 3G and “4G”. Now it puts out around 80 Mbps. Only a handful of towns in Oklahoma have 5G from AT&T, so I’m sure based on past experience it will be many years before it reaches here. And to be honest, 80 Mbps is OK for most uses, although they can’t and don’t offer any sort of cellular-based home internet with those capabilities. T-Mobile doesn’t offer any of their home internet services here either, even though their site puts out around 120 Mbps.

        • Shaun Michalak

          I do not think that we have any 2G only towers around here, but I do know that there are a few towers that are AT&T that are band 5 3G only around here.. Multiple towers in a row going down route 6 here.. Still no 4G on them though.. So it is kind of like that here too. It will be nice when T-Mobile gets service installed in that area with their own towers, but with everything that they have to do, I am not expecting it any time soon..

        • Glenn Gore

          There shouldn’t be any AT&T 2G left anywhere after their nationwide 2G shutdown a while back. I haven’t heard anything from T-Mobile lately on when they might do the same.

        • Shaun Michalak

          My guess.. 3 years max.. The reason I say that is because T-Mobile has not installed any 3G since they started that big expansion about 6 years ago.. They only installed 4G or better since then. With that being said, there is only a very small amount of their towers that even had it in the first place.. I would guess that as they upgrade towers, they are just removing 3G service, and applying it to 4G and better.. so just a little at a time..

          In my area, I was checking the towers, and it seems that about the time that they did the band 71 upgrades here.. Well, according to cell mapper, pretty much all of the 3G towers have not been seen since that band 71 upgrade was done.. As with Sprint towers.. Since T-Mobile is changing out all the hardware on those towers to fit their network, why would they go through the hassle of putting 3G back up as they switch things out?? It would make no sense.. and they said that would be done within 3 years..

          Plus, on the Sprint side, all the towers sold to Dish would have to be decommissioned for Sprint service too.. and 3G service would be done on the 800mhz range, which is being sold to Dish in 3 years too.. That all leads up to 3 years max IMO..

        • Glenn Gore

          I do a lot of driving doing mapping for Cellmapper. More so these days, it’s a lot more fun than just sitting at home, don’t have to deal with people, just pack some snacks & drinks and tour the country for a couple hours a day. I did about 100 miles the other day and noticed that when I go into a valley or low spot where hills block the signal from a T-Mobile tower, that the phone will drop to 2G, or lose signal altogether, but never drop to 3G or HSPA. I never see sites without LTE show up as 3G or HSPA in flat country any more either. Could it be that T-Mobile is turning off 3G and 4G/HSPA in favor of LTE/5G and leaving 2G up as fall-back? Maybe it’s just this area or something. It has been months since I have seen my phone show anything except 2G, LTE, and 5G.

        • Shaun Michalak

          My neck of the woods.. I do not think I have ever gotten anything but 4G here.. If I do not have 4G, then I either have no service, or I am jumping off of AT&T.. To be fair, outside of the main city, almost all of, if not all of the T-Mobile towers are all newer towers, within 6 years old.. All of those towers, when I had a 3G phone, I could not connect to any of them outside of the main city.. At that time, I was with T-Mobile, and decided to see how coverage was with Metro.. This was before I knew that T-Mobile had bought MetroPCS, so they were the same company.. I knew they used the same towers, I just didn’t know that they were bought out at the time.

          So to try them out, I took my 3G T-Mobile phone, and got a cheap 4G Metro phone (they were only something like $20 or so at that time) and then went for a drive to see coverage.. Imagine my surprise as where I lost service on my 3G phone, I started getting T-Mobile towers on my 4G phone.. It was at that time that I realized just how many new towers that T-Mobile had put up, and how they put no backward compatibility in there for people with 3G phones.. Needless to say, I upgraded to 4G phones pretty fast after that..

          I kept those until they came out with band 71 phones, which I then upgraded again, and have had the same phones since then.. My phone, the Aristo 3 supports bands 25, 26, and 41 too (not that band 26 or 41 is going to help at all), so if and when T-mobile installs band 25 on their towers, I can still access it, so my only limitation would really be 5G.. I will wait until it really makes it worth while to upgrade again before I do.. and that means more then just 5G access with the same coverage..

        • marque2

          It is interesting that fiber needed a to be upgraded just like anything else. Repeaters eventually go bad and newer technologies allow much more data to go through a single strand. If some company 20 years ago put in 10x the fiber for future use they would be hurting now with a outdated line and not enough throughput.

        • Shaun Michalak

          But at the same time, it is only worth considering future use to a certain extent.. If you need 5 fiber lines, and you put 6 in, so that you have the little extra.. that is one thing.. But who knows what technology will be out in another 10 years, or what you will need.. Just look at the cable companies.. They originally ran a full copper network and said it would be fine for years to come.. Then they started using a ton of data for internet, and suddenly, 10 years later, their network could not handle even a fraction of what it needed to, to support home internet service. In that aspect, not knowing if there will be something better out 10 years from now, it is only worth looking at the future to a certain point for increased abilities..

          Just look at home networks.. I remember when a 10 mb network speeds was blazing fast.. Now we have 1000 mb speeds.. But I highly doubt that the 10mb rated line would handle those kinds of speeds.. Could you imagine installing 3 of those 10mb lines, so you had upgrade abilities, and 5 years down the road, them come out with 100mb lines, and then so many years later, 1000 mb lines.. Just an example of how installing way more then you are going to use in the near future could be wasted money spent of “what if” upgrades for the future..

    • KMB877

      Why are you saying “thy need to get Sprints towers converted over”? No need any conversion, just software settings: T-mob needs to authorize SIM cards to work with Sprint’s 2.5 GHz towers.

      • Shaun Michalak

        Nope.. Convert means convert.. Sprint uses many different vendors for their hardware, and T-Mobile is going to replace all of Sprints hardware to standardize it with their network, so they only have to support one type of hardware, and not 3 or 4.. Until they do that, they are basically connecting the Sprint towers to the T-mobile network by proxy.. I am not saying that they can not do what you said, but doing what you said, and doing what they want to do is 2 different things.. Not to mention, maintenance and upgrades / updates is much easier when you know exactly what you are working with, and not have to go do something different at each location.

        • Mike

          They still have to turn over quite a few tower to Dish.. And from what I’ve seen here all the Sprint towers were upgraded before the merger. So Tmobile towers still need upgraded in our area.. heck I seen 1 Tmobile towers have wires hanging down, looked like no maintenance even done on it, while the Sprint tower next to it was all new. So it’s possible Dish in gonna get some nice towers.

        • Shaun Michalak

          Personally, I think T-Mobile has been putting some stuff off with their towers, because of waiting for the merger.. This way they do not have to keep going back again and again.. They probably thought that it as not going to take years to get the merger through like it did.

    • Mike

      Guess with that list it’s going to many a few years of constant work to get the job done. Maybe by that time Dish will have its cell phone business going well.

      • Shaun Michalak

        Well, T-Mobile did say that it will take approximately 3 years to convert all Sprint towers over to fit the T-Mobile network..

        Personally, I can not wait to see the coverage when they do.. Down in Luray, VA and Morgantown, WV.. and south of there too.. Both of these places T-Mobiles coverage is pretty bad.. But Sprint has decent coverage in both places.. It is going to be nice to finally have decent coverage in these areas, and more..

        I really do not expect too much from Dish outside of main cities by that point in time.. They have requirements that they have to fill, and that is only going to happen, in that short of time, if they concentrate mostly on highly populated areas..

  • Omar Boyer

    t-mobile here in los angeles cali has kinda improved , it now matches verizon on speed . But it still needs to catch up to at&t. At&t here is king in speed people bad mouth it and make fun of their 5GE but i seen speeds on 5gE u dont see on verizon or tmobile ever up to 350 mbps. on their low band 5G u dont get those speeds only when u have 5ge.

    • 5GE isn’t even 5G thats LTE-A (advanced long term eveolution) meaning they just added more spectrum to 4G network. Which isn’t even that impressive. Everyone is going to need new phone to take advantage of what 5G offers

      • Omar Boyer

        i kno that thats my point 5ge that everyone saying its not tru 5g but its deff impressive here . it beats tmobile every single speed test and also beats verizon.

        • ATT and tmobile are pretty the same here. But most non power users don’t care

        • Shaun Michalak

          When I checked out the amount of frequency per customer, from this or last year (in an article), they said that on average, AT&T has something like 1.75mhz to use per customer, and T-Mobile had 1.4 mhz.. This was pre merger of course.. But when you consider that AT&T had a good amount of 3.x ghz spectrum at that time, that really brings up the speeds vs low band, like 600mhz, which is what T-mobile has a good chunk of.. This is what makes AT&T speeds much faster.. More frequency per customer, and the use of higher frequencies for faster speeds, that T-Mobile had none of..

        • Shaun Michalak

          I do not find it very impressive that a company with high band frequency, more mid band, and about double the low band is faster then a company with out all of that.. Even with less customers..

          Now if they were comparable per customer resource, then that would really be impressive..

        • marque2

          Possibly. There are spots where At&T does well. I know a few spots where TMobile is tops by far topping 200mbs LTE. In fact TMobile is also adding the MIMO and QAM that are key to 5ge – they just aren’t pretending it is 5g.

          Granted AT&T has done well in the last year. They were always third place in data rates and now for the first time they average #1.

        • Joe

          Honestly at this point networks have gotten so complicated and are differently deployed between carriers and regions that it’s nearly impossible to advertise how well the network performs.

    • Notpoliticalyet

      Verizon is faster but doesn’t reach as far. Just wait until they have the great coverage that their 4G has.

  • Notpoliticalyet

    Yeah right now they do. It’s just a matter of time before Verizon and AT&Tsurpass them. 4G is easily converted to 5G.

  • David

    I did a test yesterday with Tmobile LTE 99Mbps & AT&T 5G 117Mbps in #CAMPFIRE area after returning back a month ago!

  • zeiferx

    i understand the marketing part of saying first nationwide 5g but what good is 5g if their 4G matches your new 5g network.
    i have both (verizon and Tmobile) and i always notice how verizon in 4g tends to surpass tmo 5g. (s20 ultra, Note 10 5g) so until i see the real 5g benefits out there to me this would be nothing more than marketing games. I do have to say that the “layer cake” in nyc is well done and works pretty good but the speed still falls short when i hit that 5g on verizon.

    Side Note. i was in belmar, NJ yesterday and my verizon phone was on 5G while on the beach and boardwalk area around 15th ave. this location is no where to be found in the verizon 5g coverage page. i did a speed test and hit 1.99Gbps.