The iPhone 4G Could Run 6X Faster On AT&T LTE Than Verizon

The iPhone 4G Could Run 6X Faster On AT&T LTE Than Verizon

An LTE-capable iPhone isn’t likely to be unveiled until 2012, but when it does, you may want to sign your contract with AT&T, as early test speed results show that Ma Bell’s LTE network might be up to six times faster than Verizon’s.

Over at GigaOM, Stacey Higginbottom took a tour of AT&T’s Foundry space in Plano, Texas, and had the opportunity to take their new LTE network (due to start rolling out in the States in July) for a spin.

. The speeds provided on the download side were about 28.87 Mbps and were about 10.4 Mbps on the upload side. This compared to speeds of 3.77 on the download side and 1.21 Mbps on the upload for an iPhone that was capable of maxing out on AT&T’s 7.2 Mbps HSPA network. So it’s fast, but sharing those speeds with others on a cell tower will bring them down. For comparison, Verizon has promised customers speeds of 5-12 Mbps on the download side and speeds of up 5 Mbps on the upload side.

On one hand, these are test speeds, and Higginbottom wasn’t sharing the tower with a bunch of other Netflix-streaming freeloaders, so they must be taken with a grain of salt. That said, AT&T claims that while LTE is capable of 150Mbps download connections, they wanted to show a “real world” experience.

AT&T hasn’t earned itself a lot of goodwill in the past, between their 3G network congestion issues and the fact that their initial forays into 4G have been capped at speeds slower than an iPhone 3G. Still, if AT&T can roll out a nation-wide network of LTE towers that supports a far faster experience than Verizon can manage in time for the iPhone 6, then perhaps all can be forgiven.

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  • cyberb0b

     I for one am tired of AT&T over promising and under delivering. 

  • Alessio Daniele Tilli

     Verizon will always be far superior at&t…. at&t is just plain lame 

  • Jay Floyd

     John, this doesn’t really seem like it should have been an article… yet.  The ‘testing’ doesn’t translate to real world use at all, and the launch is soooo far away that the tone in what you’re saying seems bizarrely premature. 

  • Jose Rodriguez

     Which also means you’ll breach your data cap….6X faster

  • Derekbondzeit0

    ATT only sucks if you live in a lame market. Florida ha great coverage and also Savannah GA has great coverage in the city. It just depends where you live.

  • Todd

    I would say that Verizon is closer to being a direct descendent of “Ma Bell” than AT&T is, despite the name. Either way, probably not a great name for one or the other any more. 

  • Archer Sully

    Bad headline. Deriving a “6x faster” figure by using the low side of what Verizon says it will do and comparing it to speeds on an engineering test network just isn’t valid.

  • Pawn

    I did a speed test on my HTC Thunderbolt the other day and had 19 down and 5 up. This is in the heart of San Jose, where I know another 3 people that have the same phone, so I know the network has some sort of saturation. Sure its not 28Mb/s, but 19Mbits down is over 2 MegaBYTES per second. Its almost as fast as my home internet.
    Not only that, but I was tethering my laptop the other day while in my buddies car and never ran into a single hiccup while traveling around town. Network never dropped a single time over the 2 hours.
    I’m sorry but AT&T has some stiff competition, and a lot of ground to make up.

  • David

    Theoretically faster IF you can get any signal at all, and IF it doesn’t get bogged down by other users. Verizon’s LTE tests at 12-18 Mbps down, 6-10 up now, in real life, but early in its life cycle before a bunch of network congestion. Once 4G becomes the norm, we’ll see what it really settles in at.

  • faissal

    UPDATE : Apple may launch next generation iPhone 5 (probably iPhone 4s) in August.

    ??? Don’t wait for the iPhone 5 release, you can apply here to qualify to test and

    keep the iPhone 4/5.

    ??? Go to : http://bit.ly/iphone4-5

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his girlfriend and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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