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Nationwide 4G Speedtest Showdown!



Who has the best 4G coverage in the nation? What about in your neighborhood?

Well. If you live in Atlanta, Chicago, New York City, Orlando or San Francisco, the Laptop Mag Nationwide 4G Showdown can help you compare service and speed of 4G service.

The nationwide 4G test covers all the major carriers and included help from our own Adam Mills who spent a full day uploading and downloading on various services and devices to complete the San Francisco leg of the test. During the test, which included AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint and Verizon, Adam found that 4G service in San Francisco is extremely spotty. He was also surprised with how good T-Mobile’s 4G network performed.

The 4G showdown includes a phone, USB modem and mobile hotspot device when available. The tests include any connectivity carriers bill as 4G, which means WiMax, LTE and HSPA+ technology all had a showing.

The 4G Tests

To complete the tests, each device performed the following activities from 3 locations in the city.

  • Loaded several popular websites
  • Measured speeds with
  • Downloaded a 155MB file from FTP
  • Uploaded 6.7MB file to same FTP

The speed tests were averages out in order to come up with a rating for each carrier.

4G Showdown Winners (and Losers)

4G showdown winner

Verizon takes top honors in th3e 4G Showdown.

As you can see in the above image, Verizon took top billing by delivering better speeds across all categories. If you want to see the individual results by carrier in each city, you can check out the full Laptop 4G showdown report which includes speeds by carrier, by city in easy to read graphs. There are also breakdowns of pricing on each carrier.

We are big fans of the Verizon 4G LTE service here at GottaBeMobile for the speed it delivers in our daily use. Living in the midwest I don’t have many choices for fast mobile connectivity, so I am glad that the ever-present Verizon is quickly expanding the 4G network. If all goes well the wait for 4G will be much shorter than the wait for 3G which seemed to take forever when the rollout was in progress a few years back.

How does 4G service stack up in your neighboirhood?



  1. Guest

    08/11/2011 at 1:15 am

    I’m not surprised at the results. This what we see in the office when we download Speedtest app. No wonder pathetic AT&T wants to buy TMO. TMO’s HSPA+ averages at least 6.5 Mbps in our area while AT&T limps along at 2 Mbps at best. But everything else pales beside VZW LTE. Once they get a decent battery in a VZW LTE they will kill off the competition.

  2. Marc

    08/11/2011 at 4:59 pm

    While no provider technically provides 4G speed, Verizon is definitely the closest to providing it with cable-esque speeds. When LTE Advanced hits the airwaves, then that’ll be something to see. Unfortunately, if we still have these crappy plan options, it won’t mean a thing.

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