T-Mobile has best 5G availability of major US carriers in new Ookla report


T-Mobile launched nationwide coverage for its 5G network late last year, and since then it’s been busy expanding that reach with more 600MHz and 2.5GHz spectrum. A new report says that T-Mobile’s effort to grow its 5G coverage is paying off.

Today Ookla released its report on the state of US mobile networks as of Q3 2020, and it found that T-Mobile customers spend the most time on a 5G signal of any major US carrier. T-Mo customers get a 5G signal 54.4% of the time, Ookla says, while Sprint customers are on 5G 47.6% of the time.

To compare, AT&T customers get a 5G signal 18.4% of the time and Verizon subscribers are on 5G just 0.6% of the time, says Ookla.


While Verizon recently launched a low-band 5G Nationwide network, this study took place in Q3 2020 which means that Verizon only had its mmWave 5G at the time, explaining its relatively low 5G availability score. T-Mobile did take the oppotunity to take a shot at Verizon and its low-band 5G network today, though, because Verizon is using Dynamic Spectrum Sharing to run 5G along with 4G LTE on the same spectrum band.

“We’re building 5G for All on dedicated airwaves to deliver both coverage and speed … while Verizon and AT&T force 5G and LTE customers to share already-crowded bandwidth,” said Neville Ray, T-Mobile’s president of technology. “The physics are simple. When you force more devices to share crowded airwaves, speeds decrease. I predict Verizon’s speeds on 5G and LTE are about to hit a massive speed bump.”

Getting back to Ookla’s report, T-Mobile came out on top when calculating median latency for the top four US carriers. T-Mo’s latency was 31ms, with Verizon and AT&T were at 33ms and 34ms, respectively. Sprint’s median latency came out to 46ms.


T-Mo faired well in the other categories of Ookla’s report, even if it didn’t come out on top. It finished second in the Fastest Providers category with “Speed Score” of 33.49. Ookla’s Speed Score takes into consideration download and upload speeds, with more weight toward download speed. AT&T came in first in this category with a Speed Score of 41.65 and Verizon was fourth with a Speed Score of 31.40.

T-Mobile came in second place in Ookla’s Consistency Score with 80.8%. The Consistency Score measures the percentage of a carrier’s data samples that meet minimum thresholds for download and upload speeds, in this case 5Mbps down and 1Mbps up. AT&T had the highest Consistency Score of 81.4% and Verizon came in third with 76.9%.

Finally, T-Mo finished third in terms of 5G performance with a Speed Score of 59.49. Verizon came in first place here with a Speed Score of 792.52 while AT&T was in second with a Speed Score of 65.22.

If you’ve got a 5G-capable phone, how has T-Mobile’s 5G network been performing for you lately?

Source: Ookla

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