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August 19, 2011

The Fastest Mobile Networks in US: 2011 Data

PCMag hit the road to test eight 3G and 4G networks in 21 U.S. cities. Before you buy your next phone or tablet, find out which wireless carrier has the fastest data network where you live.

Total of 16 handsets were used by the PC Mag  Team  shepherded by six drivers to 21 cities, covering more than 6,000 miles. The Phones used by PCMag were

AT&T: Samsung Infuse 4G
Cricket: LG Optimus C
MetroPCS: Samsung Galaxy Indulge
Sprint 3G: HTC EVO 4G
Sprint 4G: HTC EVO 4G
T-Mobile: Samsung Galaxy S 4G
Verizon 3G: Droid Incredible by HTC
Verizon 4G: HTC Thunderbolt
The Results have been summarized Below

AT&T's nationwide 3G network still offers the best balance of speed and performance outside major cities, but the giant carrier is struggling in big cities against Verizon's LTE network and T-Mobile's nimble HSPA+ technology. AT&T is moving to HSPA+ 21 right now and plans to introduce an LTE network this summer, so we could see the carrier's position recover in 2012.

Verizon Wireless
has two very different networks: a slow, but reliable nationwide 3G network and a blazingly fast 4G LTE network with limited coverage. The combination seems to be working out, as Verizon's 4G system swept our Fastest Mobile Networks awards while its 3G voice network got top marks in our Readers' Choice awards for its terrific coverage and call quality.

was the second-fastest network nationwide, and it's continuing to upgrade its speeds all the time. The carrier's existing HSPA+ 21 network is being replaced by HSPA+ 42, which could provide LTE-like speeds. (See our review of the T-Mobile Rocket 3.0 4G Laptop Stick for a first look at HSPA+ 42). Of course, all of this could come to an end if AT&T buys T-Mobile, as the larger company has pledged to shut down T-Mobile's network to use the airwaves for LTE.

Sprint is struggling with speed and consistency, and the partner it relies on for its WiMAX network, Clearwire, has perpetual financial problems. But Sprint has one huge advantage: the nation's only truly unlimited 4G plan, making it the only network that you can use to replace a home Internet connection.

 You can read more about their Test Results here