RootMetrics has published its State of the Mobile Union, based on data collected during the second half of 2022. The findings are rather interesting, at least when we put them up against findings from the other firms that track this sort of thing. According to RootMetrics, “Verizon wins far and away the most RootScore Awards, with excellent reliability, fast speeds, and the best 5G reliability.”
That’s a lot of reliability.
Typically, we’re used to seeing T-Mobile win the game of network speed, but RootMetrics does things a little differently in the sense that they try to offer a weighted score based on performances not only in metropolitan areas, but more rural markets, highways, and small towns. This leads to companies like Verizon, who has invested heavily in ensuring decent coverage wherever in the US you may be, to have a solid lead on the competition.
The above graph might be a little confusing, but each number is the number of awards by each carrier in a certain category. For example, in the Accessibility category, Verizon was awarded 45 awards, while AT&T only got 2. At the end of the tallying, AT&T ended on top with 259, Verizon with 205, and T-Mobile with 46.
If you haven’t been paying attention, RootMetrics’ own report tries very hard to be confusing to consumers, but maybe more importantly, potentially usable as marketing material for any carrier who may wish to license it. Instead of providing a clear winner (which they technically do with AT&T and its number of state RootScore awards), a lot of praise is given to Verizon and its reliability, even though AT&T appears to have won the category. As someone who doesn’t care who is on top and just wants a good mobile data experience, it’s tough when numbers and findings can be skewed with a bit of a narrative twist to favor one particular brand.
The conclusion we can pull from RootMetrics’ report is that if you’re on T-Mobile, you probably live in a big city and don’t travel much. If you’re more suburban or rural, Verizon is probably your carrier of choice. For a mixture of both, AT&T doesn’t look too bad either.
When it comes to pure 5G scoring, which someone might care about, T-Mobile appears to have dominated the field. This is why we suspect most T-Mobile fans are city dwellers. According to RootMetrics, “the carrier delivered the Fastest 5G and the Best overall 5G experience in the US for the third straight time, while offering the top 5G availability for the fourth time in a row.”
I suggest checking the full report and don’t let the clever marketing people sway you any one way. It’s your money.