John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

AT&T Tops 3G Performance Study. No, I’m Not Kidding.

Looks like AT&T is delivering on its promise to improve its network, particularly in coastal cities like New York and San Francisco. A 13-city mobile data speed test conducted by PC World shows the carrier with download speeds 67 percent faster than those of its rivals (spit take!) and greatly improved reliability and performance (see table below; click to enlarge). Seems Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone isn’t nearly the challenge to AT&T’s (T) data network resources that it once was.

“The AT&T and iPhone combo turned in the fastest average speeds–downstream and upstream–of the four carrier/smartphone combinations we tested, outperforming its rivals in more than three-fourths of the cities we sampled,” PC World explained it its study.

“AT&T connected the iPhone at an average download speed of 1259 kbps, and an average upload speed of 215 kbps over the 13 testing cities,” the study notes. “The iPhone clocked download speeds of at least 1000 kbps in more than 60 percent of our testing locations, with burst rates often exceeding 3000 kbps, and we managed to obtain a reliable connection in 91 percent of our AT&T/iPhone tests.”

The PC World study confirms results of a similar 12-city 3G performance study by Gizmodo last year.

A remarkable improvement, although it should be noted that San Francisco is still plagued by reliability issues. PC World found just 55 percent of connections made on AT&T’s network in the city to be successful. Bay Area users can only hope that the additional cell towers, cell site upgrades and increased back-haul capacity the carrier is said to be rolling out will improve this metric in short order.