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EE is the best mobile network operator in the UK for the sixth year running, according to RootMetrics

The BT-owned operator took top place in terms of reliability, speed, data, call and text performance at a UK-wide level

 EE has cemented itself as the best mobile network in the UK in independent testing.

The BT-owned operator took top place in terms of reliability, speed, data, call and text performance at a UK-wide level for the sixth year running, according to RootMetrics’ latest Review of the Mobile Landscape report

The results, taken from tests made during the six months of 2019, show EE additionally swept the board in all categories when the results were broken down into individual countries, topping the chart in England, Northern Ireland and Scotland. We similarly awarded EE the accolade of the best mobile network in the Expert Reviews Product of the Year 2019 awards last month.  

Its nearest competitor, Vodafone, shared the top spot with EE in terms of call performance and came second at a UK-wide level for the five other categories in RootMetric’s report. At a country-level, Vodafone was the strongest performer in every category in Wales.

Overall, Three took third place in five of the six categories, losing points to O2 when it came to call performance, while O2 ranked fourth overall but performed well in Northern Ireland.

READ NEXT: EE review

However, rather than these results signaling that the performance of Three and O2’s networks has declined, RootMetrics explained that it’s actually indicative of how much EE and Vodafone have improved.

“With a total of 15 Network Reliability RootScore Awards – the highest total among all operators – and excellent data reliability results in every market we tested, EE users looking for a reliable mobile experience shouldn’t be disappointed. EE was also the only operator that reached our mark of Excellent reliability for both blocked and dropped calls (call failure rates below 2%) in all 16 markets,” the report continues.

Compared to the second half of 2018, EE distanced itself from the competition in the call category winning it outright. Last year it shared the award with Three. EE also has the fastest aggregate speed in UK-wide testing and EE’s aggregate median download speed of 37.6Mbits/sec across the entirety of the UK was the fastest among all operators.

Vodafone has made a large number of investments into its network and technology over the past year and RootMetrics attributed this to the network’s latest strong performance ratings.

READ NEXT: Vodafone review

“Vodafone has continued to deploy its LTE carrier aggregation technology in UK metropolitan markets, and those investments appear to have contributed to improved speed and reliability results,” says the report. “Vodafone was the only operator that increased its award total since our last test period. Vodafone’s award tally improved from 42 in [the second half of 2018] to 50 this time, with the operator’s gains occurring in the important categories of overall performance, network reliability, and call performance.”

Overall, Vodafone improved its rankings for network reliability and call performance from third in the second half of 2018 testing to second this year, and the operator’s ranking for text performance moved from second in RootMetric’s last test period into a two-way tie for first with EE. In the previous report, Vodafone ranked second in four categories and didn’t win any UK RootScore awards.

Speed-wise, Vodafone delivered an aggregate median download speed of 21.7Mbits/sec in our UK-wide testing.

O2’s rankings for overall performance, network reliability, network speed and data performance remained the same as those recorded in the second half of 2018, but the operator’s rankings decreased for call and text performance.

READ NEXT: O2 review

For instance, O2 finished fourth for call performance and third in the text category, dropping one spot in each category and O2’s aggregate median download speed was 11.1Mbits/sec at the UK-wide level.

And finally, Three’s rankings in the categories of network reliability, call performance and text performance have decreased, yet its scores have remained the same, showing how its rankings correspond with improvements from EE and Vodafone. In last year’s report, Three shared the UK Call RootScore Award with EE, but in the first half of 2019 its rankings dropped to third.

READ NEXT: Three review

Three’s aggregate median download speed of 13.6Mbits/sec in UK-wide testing was marginally faster than that of O2.

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