RootMetrics (IHS Markit) has today published the results from their H2 2018 study into 4G and 3G mobile network performance across 16 of the United Kingdom’s “most populated metropolitan markets” (cities), which found that Coventry and Leicester were the best. Sadly London and Birmingham were the worst.
As usual the company’s testing sought to mimic how consumers use their mobile phones, which meant they used Samsung Galaxy S8 and S9 smartphones purchased from operator stores. After that the testing was conducted using services from Three UK, Vodafone, O2 and EE (BT) during the day and night while their testers walked and drove around the UK’s cities.
The results were then processed in order to produce a ranking across six different categories: overall performance, network reliability, network speed, data performance, call performance and text performance (i.e. RootScores – rated up to a maximum of 100 points). Sadly today’s report doesn’t tell us how many tests were conducted.
Overall Coventry replaced Belfast at the top by offering the best overall performance (scoring 97 out of 100) and consistently ranking near the top in five out of six categories. Meanwhile Birmingham continues its trend of low rankings, finishing last for overall performance, network reliability and call performance. The market’s low score was partially due to relatively slow speeds from O2 and Three UK, as well as a high proportion of dropped calls.
Meanwhile the UK’s largest metropolitan market, London, typically continues to finish near the bottom in several categories. London did however make one notable improvement since last time, improving its rank in the text category from 15th to 5th. While most operators’ speeds have also improved since the H1 2018 study, although call reliability in London remained relatively poor compared to what was observed in other markets.
Kevin Hasley, RootMetrics Head of Product, said:
“In an ever-growing connected world, the demand for fast and reliable mobile experiences is both business critical and vital for consumers. What our latest set of data reveals is that in some of the largest cities in the UK, network operators have to work harder than ever to meet the increasing demands of consumers.
The introduction of 5G technology will offer opportunities for the UK’s major cities to liberate themselves from underachieving network performance. Highly populated cities will be the first to deploy the small cell infrastructure required to deliver 5G coverage. As a result, the operators should be able to deliver the strong performance that users expect in major economic areas.
Reliability is important for consumer satisfaction. Coventry, Manchester and Leicester all performed well and consumers and businesses should reap the benefits in those cities.”
We’ve pasted the results below and you can read their report online (here).
Overall Performance Scores
Network Reliability Scores
Service Speed Scores
Data Performance Scores
Call Performance Scores
Text Performance Scores