I recently recovered this post from our old site, since this post was written I have collected more interesting data.
AT&T’s LTE speeds are impressive. My experience ranged from 20MBps down to almost 80MBps down over their LTE, for upload bandwidth from 9MBps up to over 50MBps up. By contrast with Comcast’s biggest baddest home cable connection I average 18MBps down and 2MBps up. AT&T’s data speeds are constant its not a short burst at those speeds its sustained for the entire connection.
This data has also been compared with Verizon and Sprint. Verizon’s LTE network has averaged around 25MBps down and 5MBps up comparatively Sprint’s WiMax network delivered 14MBps down and 2MBps up. AT&T also wins out for the ability to run voice, data and text simultaneously. So while AT&T might not have the greatest customer service they do have a far superior network, and for those of us that don’t talk to customer service and do rely heavily on speedy and reliable data. AT&T is the choice.
Original Post (recovered) Originally Posted: April 24th 2009
As some of you well know, we here at All That’s Evil like to point out the blatantly stupid things in the world, you probably also know that we aren’t huge fans of AT&T or Death Star communications as we like to call them
However, (come on, you knew it was coming) AT&T has recently impressed me. No, not the grab bag of people they have at the call centers that are supposed to provide support, they still genuinely suck as a whole. No, I am referring to the unbelievable quality of their network.
I recently took a trip to Arkansas and decided that the 11 hours in the car would provide time for a few interesting experiments. One such experiment was tethering the MacBook to the iPhone and torrenting the latest build of Ubuntu Linux. Not only did this prove to be an interesting test of the iPhone (that will be detailed in another post) but it also surprised me with the quality of the network. Doing the posted speed limit on I-65 to Nashville, I maintained 3G service for most of the ride and had EDGE for the like 7 miles I didn’t have 3G. Amazingly enough, it is very possible to torrent over cellular.
(I chose that protocol because not only does it stress up and down, it also stresses simultaneous connections) (Keep in mind we don’t condone piracy, the torrent used was that of a Linux distribution and was 700MB)
Not only is it possible, but it’s surprisingly fast. 20KBps down/8KBps up on EDGE and 300KBps down/40KBps up on 3G. While EDGE is slow by comparison to 3G it still is about 3 times the speed of dial-up. 3G proved to be near the speed of most peoples DSL connections, which while doing 70mph down the interstate is even more impressive. EDGE was able to handle around 25 total simultaneous connections (still impressive for cellular), while 3G blew my mind with over 500 simultaneous connections. (yes! you read that right!)
So if you are considering getting a cellphone or switching providers, and if you can deal with tech support people that regularly absorb neutrinos, the AT&T network won’t disappoint you.
For those of you wondering how the heck I was able to tether with an iPhone, it was simple, those of us that are developers have access to the beta of 3.0 which supports tethering, everything involved was standard unmodified software.