Wireless networks ranked
The findings were based on 10 problem areas of the customer experience:
- Dropped calls
- Calls not connected
- Audio issues
- Failed/late voicemails
- Lost calls
- Text Transmission failures
- Late text message notifications
- Web/app connection errors
- Slow downloads/apps
- Email connection errors
J.D. Power's study found that customers living in urban areas had more problems compared to those in rural or suburban communities, partly because there are more young subscribers in cities who use their devices heavily.
This report also found that those in urban areas were more likely to switch providers due to service problems.
“Enhancing network performance to ensure customers consistently experience a high-quality connection—especially those living in urban areas—can substantially improve loyalty for wireless carriers,” said Kirk Parsons with J.D. Power. “This can be accomplished by improving bandwidth efficiency, data connection speeds and reliability.”
Based on responses from 43,300 wireless customers, J.D. Power ranked carrier performance in six regions. Verizon was #1 in all of the regions except North Central, where U.S. Cellular took the top spot.
Network performance issues were measured as problems per 100 connections, with a lower score representing fewer problems and higher overall performance.
Take a look below to see how your network fared:
Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont
Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia
Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee
North Central region
Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin
Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas
Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington and Wyoming
You may be able to save money by switching providers
Extensive testing from RootMetrics last year also found that Verizon had the best overall network, followed by AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile.
But unfortunately for consumers, the best network doesn’t usually mean the best price.
So if you live in a region where a provider other than Verizon has good coverage, you may be able to save a lot of money on your cell phone bill by shopping around for a lower rate.
“If you have not shopped your cell phone plan in the last 18 months or more, that’s Clarkrageous. You’re wasting money," Clark said.