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EE is still the UK’s “best phone network”

EE has been named the nation’s best phone network by mobile analytics firm RootMetrics. 

RootMetrics’ report commended the network’s consistency, following testing across the whole UK. This included rural spaces, cities, indoor spaces and ‘metro areas’.

Related: Best small phones

At the Trusted Reviews Awards back in November, we reached the same conclusion, handing EE the Mobile Network of the Year 2019 award.

RootMetrics’ report said: “EE continued its run of excellence in our UK-wide testing, clocking the fastest aggregate median download speed among all networks at 36.5 Mbps, while winning or sharing all six UK RootScore Awards for the fifth consecutive test period.”


Picture of a map showing which operators served fastest and lowest median download speed

Image credit: RootMetrics

While it wasn’t factored into the competitive scoring, one key developing area has seemingly been EE’s early investment in 5G. While the network has won plenty of accolades like this in the past, 5G investment could mean that the company keeps doing so in the future.

The report continued: “The impressive 5G speeds we found in the UK could provide a game-changing experience for end users, particularly when it comes streaming or downloading movies and other large files. In addition, the lower latency of 5G help improve immersive user experiences such as gaming and AR/VR applications.”

Screenshot of 5G availability percentage

Image credit: RootMetrics

EE dominated across the board then, racking up some impressive speeds and scores in the tests RootMetrics conducted. Vodafone came second but did not compare well in many areas, as the speed map of the four UK nations shows.

One area in which Vodafone did save face was urban speeds. In London and Manchester the network registered the fastest median speeds recorded by RootMetrics’ testers.

Related: As 5G arrives, UK phone users want reliability more than speed

Picture of a map showing which operators served fastest and lowest median download speed

Image credit: RootMetrics

The report also offered some helpful context on why 5G could be so important to the future of our networks. EE’s 5G speed in London was more than three times faster than its non-5G mode median download speed, while Vodafone’s was 2.5 times faster.

Overall though, London was slower than cities like Birmingham and Cardiff when compared by maximum speeds recorded.

A graph showing download speed in seconds for 600MB on different networks

Image credit: RootMetrics

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