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EE UK Wins Best Mobile Operator for Scotland in H2 2020

Tuesday, March 31st, 2020 (1:23 pm) - Score 1,287

RootMetrics appears to have invented a time machine, which has today enabled them to publish the results from over 94,000 scientific tests of mobile network and mobile broadband performance conducted across Scotland during “the first half of 2020” (but.. it’s March). Once again EE (BT) comes top, while Three UK sits at the bottom.

The new report, which confusingly follows only a month after they published the results of their biannual H2 2019 study of mobile network (3G and 4G) performance across the United Kingdom (here), doesn’t offer much solid information about their approach to testing this time or the locations tested. However, judging by their website, we believe that the results are based on tests conducted in just Glasgow and Edinburgh during February and March 2020 (more Q1 2020 than H1).

Overall EE scooped all seven of the award categories in Scotland and that’s for the sixth straight time. The operator also earned a distinction as the first-ever winner of RootMetrics new ‘Accessibility’ category (this is vaguely said to reflect a holistic look at accessibility performance across data, call, and text testing) and delivered the fastest mobile data speeds, clocking an aggregate median download speed of 34.2Mbps.

By comparison Vodafone achieved a mobile data speed of 23.4Mbps, which was followed by O2 on 13.1Mbps and Three UK with just 12.1Mbps. Sadly there’s no update on the performance split between 4G and newer 5G networks, which is something that we had hoped to see in their first H1 2020 reports (it’s not even clear from the brief report if they tested 5G – the recorded speeds suggest not – or what devices were used).

NOTE: On the map above Three UK scored 12.5Mbps, but in the results text they were also given 12.1Mbps. We assume one of those is incorrect.

rootmetrics scotland mobile network scores h1 2020

Hopefully the next RootMetrics report includes more information and better testing, although we suspect that the COVID-19 crisis may limit what work they can get done this year.

UPDATE 3rd March 2020

We’ve had a comment from RootMetrics.

A RootMetrics Spokesperson said:

“Providing strong service across an entire nation isn’t an easy task. Excelling in big cities doesn’t necessarily mean that strong service will translate to success in other areas of a nation. Our Nation RootScore Report studies balance performance from dense urban areas, smaller villages, rural spaces, and roadways to paint a complete picture of the consumer mobile experience at the UK-nation level.”

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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.
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6 Responses
  1. Avatar Michael V

    I waists take it as a ‘so far this Half’ of the year. So just the first two & a half months. They’re continuously testing anyway.
    I do let the app run while I’m walking or in the car!

    Seems only limited to two cities, I’ll just read the full report in July.

    But of course EE are always on top! Sometimes I get bored of reading the reports!!! Ha!

  2. Avatar Gary

    O2 are still following the BT business model ‘claim to be better and charge more’ Their data plans are a joke pricewise so if their speeds are also lower then what exactly are they offering.

  3. Avatar Stan Drews

    Does anyone know which network is best for the Scottish islands?

    • Avatar Chris

      It depends on which island, but EE is most likely to offer you 4G due to the ESN rollout.
      If you can’t get that, Vodafone is mostly likely to have the best 2G coverage, though honestly EE’s 4G will overtake Vodafone’s 2G before long. As part of ESN EE will be obliged to cover virtually all roads which means they are building out 4G in obscenely wild locations, like the centre of the isle of Rum.

      You’ll need a phone that support 4G voice/VoLTE to get the most of either networks, and WiFi calling would be a big plus too for those harder to reach areas.

      Coverage in the islands is light years ahead of where it was just a few years ago. Skye and Mull used to have about 4 3G masts on one operator between them, now 4G is available in most the towns and villages on at least one operator.

      As always, your mileage will vary – best check the coverage checkers

    • Avatar Michael V

      Hey @Stan. The operators will probably have VoLTE coverage on the islands [also referred to as 4G voice] take Three’s coverage map for e.g… they show VoLTE coverage ‘SuperVoice’ separate from 4G data network & 3G-HSPA network.
      Check the other Operators maps too.
      It’s usually a case of having to have a phone direct from the Operator to ensure the phone supports VoLTE.

  4. Avatar Richard Plank

    Is it just Scotland that ee is good we live in Blackpool and it dont work there that good keeps freezing or you can only have one thing on

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