EE and 3 dominate regional speeds in Great Britain

In OpenSignal’s September Mobile Networks Update for the UK, EE was the runaway winner of our nationwide 4G speed award in the UK. When we drill down the regional level, EE makes a similarly strong showing, but it faces some stiff competition from 3 in a few places. Following up on our UK report, we decided to take a closer look at 3, EE, O2 and Vodafone to see how their 4G performance stacked up in England’s nine official regional divisions as well as in Scotland and Wales.

Great Britain_4G awards map_V2

As you can see from the awards map above covering the June-August test period, EE either won outright or tied for first place in all 11 areas, but in three regions where we recorded a statistical draw, The U.K.’s smallest operator 3 was the challenger. You can see the breakdown of each operator’s speeds in the bar chart below:

We found that 3 was particularly strong in 4G speed in England’s eastern reaches, averaging download speeds of 25 Mbps or greater in East of England, East Midlands, North East and South East, as well as in Wales. 3’s best showing was in the North East where it provided connection speeds of 30 Mbps in our measurements. The only area where 3 struggled was in London where we measured average 4G speeds of just 14.5 Mbps, falling short not just of EE’s but also Vodafone’s speeds.

Despite 3’s strong scores, EE had it beat in most of Great Britain. The slowest region for EE in our tests was in Yorkshire, but even there it averaged downloads speeds of nearly 26 Mbps. In eight of the 11 divisions, EE’s 4G measured average LTE speed was more than 28 Mbps, a testament to the power and breadth of its LTE-Advanced networks. At the other end of the scale was O2, which came in last for 4G speed in nearly every one of our 11 regional test groups. The sole exception was the North East where it ran neck-and-neck with Vodafone.

What are your experiences with 4G speeds in Britain? Let us know in the comments section below.

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