Most monthly paid phone contracts have a minimum contract length of 24 months … with some up to 36 months before you can switch carriers. This means you’ll want to make sure you have the right mobile network. Fortunately, new research published by Opensignal has made it much, much easier to determine which operator is the best choice for you.
The latest report released by Opensignal is based on data collected from hundreds of thousands of smartphones between June 1 and August 29, 2021. The results were then analyzed to classify the UK’s largest operators into a number of categories.
Most of these categories combine the performance of 4G and 5G networks, however, one of the Opensignal categories specifically distinguishes the 5G performance of each network. 5G networks are designed to provide faster speeds and greater bandwidth, so people in crowded stadiums and busy train stations don’t see their signal and download speeds drop – as they do. on 4G, for example.
Overall, EE was named the best network. The BT-owned mobile service took first place in five of the top seven categories.
When it comes to the download experience on 4G and 5G networks, the thousands of users who submitted data for the Opensignal report recorded an average speed of 39 Mbps. For comparison, the nationwide average fixed broadband speed is 70 Mbps. Three won the silver medal in this category, but only managed about half of the average download speeds, reaching 19.3 Mbps.
EE also took victory in the Download Speed (5G), Download Speed (4G + 5G), Download Speed (5G) and 4G Availability categories in the UK.
In the latter case, the company managed an impressive 93.6% coverage across the UK. The silver medal in this category went to Vodafone, which posted 86.4%, while O2 followed in third place with 83.6% coverage, or around 10% less 4G availability nationwide. than EE.
Three was the winner when it comes to nationwide 5G availability, managing to spread its lightning-fast mobile signal to 7.4% of the country. In contrast, EE only managed to reach 5.5%. Vodafone comes in second with 6.4 percent.
It should be noted that, as with all comparisons and studies, the Opensignal report has limitations. Studies that rely on participatory app-based data may be limited by the limitations of users’ smartphones, including slower or aging hardware. The location where the data was collected could also impact metrics like download speeds.