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RootMetrics Report: AT&T and Verizon Locked in a Tie for Title of Top-Ranked Mobile Network in San Francisco

BELLEVUE, Wash., Feb. 11, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- According to a new report released today, AT &T and Verizon shared the RootMetrics RootScore Award for overall mobile performance in San Francisco. In the previous round of testing in August 2014, Verizon, AT &T, and T-Mobile shared this award. That's according to independent mobile analytics firm RootMetrics®, which measures mobile performance of the four major national mobile network operators with tests designed to replicate real-world consumer behavior.

The Overall performance category includes results across data, call, and text testing, and the top-performing network is awarded the Overall RootScore Award. A good Overall RootScore means a good consumer experience.

The final RootMetrics Overall Performance RootScore rankings for San Francisco:

1 – AT &T (97.6)
1 – Verizon (97.2)
3 – T-Mobile (95.6)
4 – Sprint (92.6)

Network Reliability and Speed

RootMetrics measures network reliability and speed to give consumers a clear and holistic view of each network's performance in these key areas of mobile usage. The Reliability Index is based on a combination of results from data, call, and text tests, while the Speed Index includes data and text results. Looking at the network reliability and speed indices in conjunction with Overall RootScores offers the most comprehensive look at mobile performance in San Francisco.

In the network reliability category, Verizon and AT &T shared the #1 position for the fourth consecutive time. T-Mobile and AT &T shared the top spot for network speed. Previously, T-Mobile had ranked first for network speed in San Francisco three consecutive times.

Reliability Index rankings:

1 – Verizon (98.9)
1 – AT &T (98.7)
3 – T-Mobile (96.6)
3 – Sprint (95.8)

Speed Index rankings:

1 – T-Mobile (94.6)
1 – AT &T (94.5)
3 – Verizon (91.2)
4 – Sprint (83.6)

"Increasingly, consumers want a mobile experience that is both reliable and fast—especially in a tech-centric city like San Francisco," said Bill Moore, RootMetrics CEO. "Fortunately, results from our testing of network reliability and network speed found strong results across all four networks. This combination of reliability and speed is great news, as consumers in San Francisco have multiple options for choosing a network that can accommodate their specific needs."

Data Performance: AT &T wins Data RootScore Award in San Francisco

Data Performance RootScores factor in each network's reliability and speed when downloading and uploading data, performing email tasks, and downloading files that approximate using typical webpages or apps. AT &T won the Data RootScore Award outright in San Francisco for the first time. During RootMetrics previous testing, T-Mobile won this award. AT &T recorded the fastest median download speed at 21.8 Mbps, while T-Mobile recorded the fastest median upload speed at 19.4 Mbps.

Since previous testing in August, there were several notable changes to the data performance landscape in San Francisco. Since the previous round of testing in August, Sprint's median download speed increased from 4.0 Mbps to 9.1 Mbps, and Sprint's median upload speed increased from 2.1 Mbps to 4.3 Mbps. T-Mobile's median download speed increased from 15.1 Mbps to 18.5 Mbps since August, and T-Mobile's median upload speed increased from 12.8 Mbps to 19.4 Mbps. Verizon's median download speed increased from 11.2 Mbps to 16.9 Mbps, and Verizon's median upload speed increased from 8.4 Mbps to 11.0 Mbps.

Median download and upload speeds by network

AT &T: 21.78 Mbps download/11.23 upload
T-Mobile: 18.53 Mbps download/19.41 upload
Verizon: 16.93 Mbps download/11.03 upload
Sprint: 9.09 Mbps download/4.28 upload

Data speeds impact how quickly consumers can perform various tasks online. For example, in an ideal situation, uploading medium-sized pictures (1 MB) to Facebook or other online albums typically takes 25 seconds to 45 seconds on average at speeds below 3.0 Mbps. At speeds above 6.0 Mbps, uploading a similar picture generally takes less than 1 second.

Making the call

Making calls in San Francisco should be a positive experience on any of the four networks. Verizon and AT &T shared the Call RootScore Award, each with scores above 97. In August, Verizon won the award outright. T-Mobile and Sprint followed with scores of 93.2 and 92.2, respectively.

Text me

T-Mobile and AT &T shared the Text RootScore Award, scoring 98.0 and 97.9, respectively. With Text RootScores of 96 or higher for all four networks, texting in San Francisco should be a smooth experience.

More than 25,000 tests in San Francisco

To evaluate the mobile experience in San Francisco, RootMetrics conducted 25,801 call, data, and text tests on the networks of AT &T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon during all hours of the day and night from January 7 through January 14, 2015. The tests were conducted using the RootMetrics RootScout app running on Android-based, consumer smartphones purchased off-the-shelf from mobile network operator stores. Tests were performed indoors (at 34 locations), outdoors, and during drive tests (covering 1,121 miles). For details about RootMetrics testing, see the methodology section of the RootMetrics website. Mobile performance varies depending on where people live, work, or otherwise spend time. Because a variety of factors can influence performance, examples that list what data speeds mean while performing various mobile activities are a general look at data speeds for illustrative purposes and aren't specific to San Francisco.

About RootMetrics®

RootMetrics® is an independent mobile analytics firm that offers insights into the consumer mobile experience. RootMetrics provides data on mobile network performance to help people make more informed mobile decisions. The company offers its RootScore® Report series for the nation, metropolitan markets, and airports, as well as its downloadable CoverageMap app. To ensure that RootMetrics testing reflects real-world mobile usage, testing is conducted based on where, when, and how consumers use their devices most often.

CONTACT: Ann Marie Ricard Curator PR for RootMetrics (206) 683-0552Source: RootMetrics