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EE named UK's top mobile network - but Vodafone and Three on top in devolved nations

Thursday, July 27th 2017 by Phil Wilkinson-Jones

EE has been named the UK’s best performing network by mobile testing firm RootMetrics.

But it’s a different story in three of the four home nations, with Vodafone winning in Northern Ireland and Three coming out on top in Scotland and Wales.

EE was named best performing operator in England and claimed the UK-wide awards for speed, data and overall performance. It also shared the UK-wide text award with Vodafone.

Three won the UK reliability award and shared the award for calls with Vodafone. It also won the overall and reliability awards in both Scotland and Wales.

Vodafone was the overall winner in Northern Ireland and also won the call performance award.

O2 performed well in Northern Ireland and shared the text award.

RootMetrics also looked at how mobile operators are getting on with the rollout of 4G by measuring how often mobile users can get a 4G signal.

It found that EE leads the way, with its customers able to get 4G 90% of the time. Vodafone and O2 aren’t far behind on 82% and 81% respectively, with Three on 67%.

Scott Stonham, general manager of Europe for RootMetrics, said: “These latest results have really shaken things up and show the increasing competitiveness in the UK, particularly over the last six months.

'Strong mobile options'

“EE continues to lead the way, but Three and Vodafone are close behind. What is clear is that each operator showed strong performance in at least one particular country, while nobody was able to sweep the board at the four-nations level.

“UK consumers have strong mobile options depending on how and where they use their devices most.”

Ian Fogg, a mobile and telecoms analyst for IHS Markit, said: “To succeed, mobile operators must secure sufficient radio spectrum and invest in the necessary equipment, sites and operational teams to ensure consumers enjoy fast reliable mobile broadband.

“With new UK spectrum allocations soon to be auctioned in the run up to 5G, these performance results provide a snapshot on the competitive balance between the UK mobile operators now, and highlight which operators most need to acquire new spectrum capacity if they are to be a future mobile performance winner.”

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