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Print 29 comment(s) - last by Stories84.. on Sep 27 at 10:34 AM


Tests show AT&T's Momentum 4G LTE modem consistently beating Verizon's LTE offerings in data speeds, in Texas at least.

Of course, AT&T has "home court" advantage in the "Lone Star State".  (Source: Federal Highway Administration)

Verizon's LTE coverage (bottom, yellow dots) is much broader geographically than AT&T's 4G coverage (orange dots, top), which is only available in five cities.  (Source: AT&T, Verizon)
However, there's a major catch when it comes to AT&T's win

PCWorld took AT&T Inc.'s (T) new LTE network out for a spin.  They decided to take the company's LTE network for a spin in Houston, Texas to test it speeds.  Comparing the AT&T 4G to Verizon Communications Inc.'s (VZ) own 4G offerings, they found that AT&T handily won.

AT&T's 3G network already has showed itself to be the nation's fastest data network, being nearly three times faster than Verizon in some tests.

The AT&T 4G network is similarly impressive.  It hit peak download speed of 42.85 Mbps (on the Momentum 4G modem) and an average download speed of 24.65 Mbps, while the Verizon network only mustered a peak of 23.81 Mbps (with the UML290 modem) and an average of 16.70 Mbps.  Uploads showed an even broader gap, with 11.44 Mbps for the AT&T modem versus 4.01 Mbps for the Verizon modem.

In short, AT&T was about 50 percent faster in downloads, and almost three times as fast in uploads.

But there's a catch and it's a rather big one -- AT&T's LTE coverage is reportedly the strongest in Texas, as it is home to Southwestern Bell (headquartered in Dallas), the core company that grew into AT&T via two decades of acquisitions and mergers.   So consider these results the best case scenario of sorts.

Following the trend from Texas, coverage in Atlanta, Georgia, home of BellSouth -- another Baby Bell -- is reportedly quite strong.  Other headquarters of former Baby Bells turned AT&T acquisitions aren't faring quite so well.  Chicago's coverage is reportedly significantly slower than Texas's.  AT&T blames this on lack of available spectrum.  It says that in Chicago it's using paired 5 MHz blocks of spectrum, versus Verizon, which is using paired 10 MHz blocks of spectrum.

Another general issue with AT&T's network is general lack of coverage.  AT&T's 4G covers 70 million people, while Verizon's covers 160 million -- approximately half of the nation.  Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) currently covers 120 million Americans with 4G, but its WiMax network is reportedly much slower than Verizon's LTE.  T-Mobile covers 200 million Americans with its HSPA+ 4.2 network which is reportedly slightly speedier than Sprint, but still slower than LTE.

AT&T cites these problems as justifications for its proposed merger with Deutsche Telekom AG's (ETR:DTE) T-Mobile USA, which is currently being blocked by a U.S. Department of Justice antitrust lawsuit.


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Verizon in Paris, TX
By AmishElvis on 9/20/2011 11:59:37 AM , Rating: 1
I just spent 8 days in Paris, TX. My Verizon/Samsung Droid Charge was basically useless as an internet device. Every couple of days it would randomly manage to connect to the internet long enough to pull down a couple of e-mails, but that's it. Voice coverage was fine. The really annoying thing is that I pay extra to use the phone as a mobile hotspot. I was planning to use the phone to connect to the internet and get some work done on my laptop. What a waste of money.

After a couple of days I re-subscribed to my iPad's AT&T $25 per month 3G data plan. The iPad was able to connect no matter where it was. Even on highway 82 between Paris and Dallas (in the absolute middle of nowhere) it was able to download map data and show me where I was.

Even where I live in Washington, DC I am often unable to connect to the internet using my Samsung Charge phone with Verizon. I very rarely had that problem with my AT&T iPhone. It was slow sometimes, but it almost always worked.




RE: Verizon in Paris, TX
By JazzMang on 9/20/2011 12:27:42 PM , Rating: 2
Both issues kind of sound like issues relating to your phone and not the network its attached to...


RE: Verizon in Paris, TX
By mcnabney on 9/20/2011 2:04:42 PM , Rating: 5
That's funny because I have family in DC and Paris, TX and they all have nothing but good things to say about their Verizon service. Maybe you should get back to work. AT&T doesn't pay you to surf the net.


RE: Verizon in Paris, TX
By Labotomizer on 9/20/2011 2:31:17 PM , Rating: 2
You likely were connected to EDGE. Does the Droid Charge not support 2G on Verizon? If so that would explain a lot, although in Paris, TX itself I've had no issues with Verizon. This was two years ago, but I was doing a lot of traveling all over the state of TX and Verizon was rock solid.

Hurricane Ike killed my desire to ever give AT&T another shot. My phone was worthless in Galveston County for over a month after the hurricane, and even after that it wasn't much better. Dropped calls, numerous attempts to get a call through in the first place, horrible voice quality, and abysmal data service. Considering at the time Ike hit I was spending a lot of time supporting network infrastructure for police, EMS, fire and schools it was a major issue. Not just an inconvenience.


RE: Verizon in Paris, TX
By Stories84 on 9/27/2011 10:34:30 AM , Rating: 2
Umm... what? I live in DC and have unbelievable speeds and connection strength on my Droid Bionic (LTE or EVDO). In fact, I routinely get 15mbps+ down on my phone and always have very good strength. Hell, I even get EVDO (3G) data speeds underground on the subway in most locations! I have not missed serviced at all on my phone (or even with my original Droid 1 which was EVDO-only).

Something is definitely wrong with your phone (or the radio on the phone).


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