In other words, iPhone customers on AT&T obtained the update, watched the icon, did speed tests to see what kind of rates they were getting, and that added a whole bunch of new, faster speed evaluation information that dissipates AT&T’s numbers for the last week of Q1. And, as Ookla notes, because 70% of AT&T’s clients are iPhone consumers — compared to 49 percent on T-Mobile and 62% on Verizon — that bulge from iOS users trying to work out if 5G E was really quicker than the LTE they had the day before (spoiler: it is not) was more significant.
So yes, AT&T’s network has been getting better, and is slightly faster as a whole now. But as the statement of AT&T would suggest it is not as dramatic of an increase, and once numbers begin to normalize again, things will continue to seem a bit closer going. And no quantity of 5G E marketing hype will have the ability to change this.
Compare that with the chart AT&T published last week, though, calculating weekly rates throughout Q1 2019. Things are still neck and neck, but AT&T’s speeds take up. Why was AT&T’s network? As Ookla clarifies, no.
Instead, the business notes that”In the final week of Q1, we also observed an increase in quicker tests taken on AT&T’s network. Upon analysis, we discovered that this connected with the launch of iOS 12.2 and the roll from AT&T’s 5G E icon” As Ookla told that the Verge last week, the increased number of speed tests came specifically following the launch of iOS 12.2 (which added AT&T’s 5G E icon) and specifically from iPhone XR, XS Max, XS, X, 8, and 8 Plus devices (the mobiles which currently display 5G E service on AT&T).
It is true that AT&T failed to have the quickest mean broadband speeds .
But there’s just 1 problem: since Ookla has taken the time to point out at a blog post, AT&T’s claim isn’t quite as resounding of a victory as the company has declared.
It’s a part of an upward tendency for AT&T, that has spent the previous year with dramatically slower rates than competitors T-Mobile and Verizon, for a very simple reason: that the business was much slower to embrace the newer LTE technologies (things like MIMO — several antennas arrays — and carrier aggregation) than its rivals were. Since the network of AT&T caught up, so did its comparative speed evaluations, to the stage where things are once more neck and neck, as noticed in the graph of Ookla.