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EE and Vodafone Deliver Fastest UK 4G Mobile Speeds for May 2018

Wednesday, June 27th, 2018 (12:01 am) - Score 5,876

The latest crowd-sourced study of Mobile Broadband performance from Tutela has been published for May 2018, which reveals that EE and Vodafone continue to dominate for 4G data speeds and latency, although Three UK holds the top spot when it comes to older 3G connections.

As usual the research was conducted by gathering anonymous usage data from the background of 1,500+ supporting Android and iOS based Smartphone apps (conducted throughout May 2018), which produced a total of 2.52 billion measurements, 63.8 million records, 235,000 speedtests and 13.6 million response tests.

Overall EE produced the fastest mobile download (average of 22.6Mbps) and upload (average of 10Mbps) speeds, although most of the 4G networks were neck-and-neck for server response times (latency in milliseconds) and jitter. Meanwhile O2 and Three UK generally came last, although the latter does particularly well if you only connect via their older 3G bands.

tutela 4g mobile broadband speeds may 2018

Readers should of course consider that some networks, such as EE, have better 4G coverage, more spectrum and a more advanced network setup than their rivals, although Vodafone aren’t far off and it shows. Similarly operators like Three UK may suffer more strain on their data capacity (network congestion) because of affordable “all-you-can-eat” style data plans, which are a capacity hog but make them quite attractive.

Lest we forget that testing via non-dedicated apps may be less accurate than dedicate solutions (e.g. Opensignal) and crowd-sourced data could also be affected by any limitations of the device being used, which won’t have a common type of hardware for helping to form a solid baseline. Suffice to say that performance testing like this may not always tell the whole story but it’s still a useful bit of extra information to play with.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
5 Responses
  1. Avatar Mike says:

    I think Three is saving for the 5G rollout, hence not investing in LTE-A.

  2. Avatar Greg says:

    Three lost all 4G auctions. I hope they win 5G 700mh.

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      Define lost? Granted they could have purchased more 4G spectrum had their parent approved, but they did win slices of several 4G bands (as well as some 1800MHz from EE):

      https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2013/03/ofcom-uk-4g-mobile-broadband-auction-could-of-raised-gbp5-2bn.html

      https://www.ispreview.co.uk/index.php/2018/04/ofcom-publish-final-results-from-the-uk-4g-and-5g-mobile-auction.html

  3. Avatar Greg says:

    Three has 2×5 800Mhz 4G spectrum because Ofcom secured it for the smallest player on the market in 2013.

    “On top of that Ofcom also lost out by setting aside spectrum for Three UK, which only paid the reserve price.”

    O2 was the winner of 4G aucion in 2018.

    They need good slice of 5G 700MHz for better coverage.

  4. Avatar SliGuy says:

    Three is the slowest in London and Vodafone comes out on top, I thought EE would be the fastest but it came out second based on this video:

    https://youtu.be/HIMzgYWcXMI

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