FCC report says T-Mobile, other carriers overstated their coverage maps2019-12-05 18:33 by Daniela
Tags: FCC, T-Mobile, Verizon
A new FCC report says that Verizon, T-Mobile, and US Cellular have lied about their rural coverage. The FCC have received numerous complaints about coverage, but the volume of complaints about rural coverage from the aforementioned carriers spurred the agency to investigate. FCC staff ended up driving more than 10,000 miles around rural America with Galaxy S9 smartphones running continuous speed tests. They also conducted stationary speed tests at various locations in search of the required minimum 5Mbps download speeds.
Across the three networks tested — Verizon, T-Mobile and US Cellular — the FCC's field agents surpassed the minimum download speed claimed in only a depressing 62.3% of trials. Verizon led the trio, with 64.3% of tests on Big Red's network achieving download speeds of at least 5 Mbps or greater. T-Mobile was second at 63.2%, followed by US Cellular at just 45%.
All three carriers even lied about where customers could access 4G coverage. More than 16% of Verizon’s tests, 21% of T-Mobile's tests, and nearly 40% of US Cellular's tests proved to inaccurately claim coverage where the FCC found none.
FCC officials confirmed that Chairman Ajit Pai does not plan to punish the three carriers in any way. Instead, the FCC intends to issue an enforcement advisory to the broader industry, reminding carriers "of the penalties associated with filings that violate federal law."
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