AT&T battles it out with Telcel in Mexico

It’s been less than two years since AT&T crossed the U.S. border, buying up Mexico’s two smallest mobile providers, but in that short time it’s managed to build up quite the impressive mobile data operation. In our second State of Mobile Networks report for Mexico, AT&T won our awards for fastest overall and 3G speeds, and ran neck-and-neck with mega-operator Telcel for best 4G availability.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user Blok 70

Photo courtesy of Flickr user Blok 70

Telcel, however, is no operator to be trifled with. It won our 4G speed award with an average download connection of 23.3 Mbps. Telcel also had the more responsive LTE network in our tests, winning OpenSignal’s 4G latency award. But despite its big 4G numbers, Telcel didn’t deliver the fastest overall mobile data experience in our analysis. AT&T’s combination of fast 3G, fast 4G and generally high LTE availability resulted in our users measuring an aggregate download speed of 10.9 Mbps, compared to 8.5 Mbps for Telcel and 4.6 Mbps for Movistar.

Availability, which measures the percentage of time a user is connected to a particular network, was a much closer contest. We found an LTE signal on both AT&T and Telcel around 65% of the time, resulting in a statistical tie. Movistar clearly has some catching up to do in this category. Our testers were only able to latch onto a Movistar LTE signal 51.4% of the time.

For our full analysis of 3G and 4G performance in Mexico, check out the report.

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