Want the Best Mobile Performance? Here’s Where You Should and Shouldn’t Live 

Any mobile device user – which is just about everyone these days – has had to endure the frustrating experience of poor mobile service at one time or another. This can often be explained by the presence of mountains or other obstacles that block signal transmission. Being too far away from a cell tower is another common mobile service deterrent.

 

But even if you’re in a major metropolitan area with close proximity to cell towers, it doesn’t always mean you’ll enjoy trouble-free cell phone transmission. Mobile performance can vary greatly from one market to another. A recent study conducted by RootMetrics ranked mobile performance in the 125 largest U.S. markets using factors such as reliability, speed, text, data and call. The rankings were based on performance results of the four top wireless networks: Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile.

 

Let’s take a quick look at the top five winners and losers in each category:

 

Reliability

 

The best:

  1. Oklahoma City, OK
  2. Chicago, IL
  3. Lansing, MI
  4. Fort Wayne, IN
  5. Indio, CA

 

The worst (starting with #125 and working backward):

 

  1. Hudson Valley, NY
  2. Omaha, NE
  3. Victor Valley, CA
  4. Lancaster, PA
  5. Riverside, CA

 

Speed

 The best:

 

  1. Rockford, IL
  2. Augusta, GA
  3. Chicago, IL
  4. San Diego, CA
  5. Greenville, SC

 

The worst:

 

  1. Hudson Valley, NY
  2. Honolulu, HI
  3. Cincinnati, OH
  4. Temecula, CA
  5. Provo, UT

 

Data 

The best:

 

  1. Chicago, IL
  2. Augusta, GA
  3. San Diego, CA
  4. Akron, OH
  5. Greenville, SC

 

The worst:

 

  1. Hudson Valley, NY
  2. Honolulu, HI
  3. Cincinnati, OH
  4. Bakersfield, CA
  5. Albuquerque, NM

 

Call

 The best:

 

  1. Indio, CA
  2. Lansing, MI
  3. Oklahoma City, OK
  4. Rockford, IL
  5. Modesto, CA

 

The worst:

 

  1. Victor Valley, CA
  2. Omaha, NE
  3. Hudson Valley, NY
  4. Las Vegas, NV
  5. Los Angeles, CA

 

Text

 

The best:

 

  1. Spokane, WA
  2. Boise, ID
  3. Port St. Lucie, FL
  4. Ann Arbor, MI
  5. Kissimmee, FL

 

The worst:

 

  1. Stockton, CA
  2. Sarasota, FL
  3. Hudson Valley, NY
  4. Knoxville, TN
  5. Jackson, MS

 

Overall

 

Now, for the moment you’ve been waiting for, the five best markets for overall mobile phone performance in the U.S. are:

 

  1. Chicago, IL
  2. Oklahoma City, OK
  3. Lansing, MI
  4. Rockford, IL
  5. Spokane, WA

 

And the five worst markets in the U.S. are:

 

  1. Hudson Valley, NY
  2. Victor Valley, CA
  3. Omaha, NE
  4. Lancaster, PA
  5. Oxnard, CA

 

A Few Observations

 

You’re probably not surprised that a large city such as Chicago would top the rankings, as larger metropolitan areas typically have more advanced mobile phone infrastructures in place. But being in large city doesn’t necessarily guarantee superior mobile performance. For instance, the New York City area, with the largest U.S. population base at 18.4 million, came in at #98 in the overall rankings. Los Angeles, with the second-largest number of inhabitants at 12.2 million, could not crack the top 10.

 

It’s also interesting to note that the bottom five markets in terms of overall mobile performance are relatively small. The population rankings for these five cities are as follows: Hudson Valley, NY (88); Victor Valley, CA (113); Omaha, NE (57); Lancaster, PA (90), and Oxnard, CA (102).

 

Where You Live Makes a Difference 

The area in which you live can make a significant difference in the performance of your mobile device. This can be a key consideration if you’re thinking of relocating to another part of the U.S. and dependable mobile service is important to you.

 

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