News Release

New RootMetrics Rankings Show Which US Cities Are Best for Mobile Performance

New RootMetrics Rankings Show Which US Cities Are Best for Mobile Performance

August 26, 2019

RootMetrics by IHS Markit, the standard for mobile performance benchmarking, today released its series of 1H 2019 US Metro Rankings reports.

Comparing performance across 125 metro areas, RootMetrics shows which big cities excel, which smaller cities surpassed the competition, which tech cities impressed, and which metros have room for improvement


RootMetrics by IHS Markit, the standard for mobile performance benchmarking, today released its series of 1H 2019 US Metro Rankings reports, which compare mobile network performance in the ten largest metropolitan markets in the US, identify the best and worst performing markets, and show how strong performance is in the top high-tech markets in the country.

Key takeaways

  • Chicago was the top performer amid the country’s ten largest metros, while New York and Los Angeles offered only middle of the pack mobile performance.
  • Miami’s aggregate median download speed of 25.3 Mbps was the second-slowest among the most populated markets, trailing only Houston.
  • Seattle offered the best performance among the top high-tech cities, delivering both strong speed and reliability across testing.
  • Smaller markets excelled in several categories, with Ann Arbor and Lansing, MI offering the fastest aggregate median download speeds across all 125 metro areas.

The new report shows that when it comes to mobile performance, bigger isn’t necessarily better.

New York City and the Tri-State Area, for example, the largest metro in the US, finished with generally average rankings and was home to a solid aggregate median download speed of 41.6 Mbps. In contrast, Lansing, MI, with a population rank of 117 out of 125, took top honors in the overall performance category, ranking among the top-5 in five out of six test categories, and delivered an impressive aggregate median download speed of 50.4 Mbps.

“For consumers and enterprises alike, strong mobile performance is key to daily life in our increasingly connected communities at home, at work and in between,” said Francis Sideco, vice president, technology at IHS Markit. “As our latest report shows, fast speeds aren’t only found in the biggest markets in the US. The carriers are providing strong performance and excellent reliability in a majority of metros across the US. And with 5G deployments beginning, we can expect to see even more emphasis on speed and strong reliability in the near future.”

Within the nation’s top high-tech markets, Seattle and Boston delivered impressive results. Seattle ranked first among high-tech cities for both overall performance and network reliability, and Boston stood out with exceptional reliability performance and the nation’s 10th fastest aggregate median download speed, at 44.9 Mbps, among the 125 markets tested. On the other hand, tech giant San Francisco ranked among the bottom of the high-tech markets tested with low rankings in general, coming in last for overall and reliability performance. In nationwide performance results, the city’s aggregate median download speed of 29.8 Mbps ranked 73rd out of 125 and overall performance ranked 110th.

How RootMetrics tests

IHS Markit combines scientific data with real-world mobile performance insights to provide consumers with an independent view of each carrier’s performance. All tests were conducted using unmodified, off-the-shelf Samsung Galaxy S9 smartphones purchased from carrier stores. RootMetrics uses random sampling techniques to ensure results offer a robust characterization of performance across six testing categories, including overall performance, reliability, speed, data performance, call performance and text performance. Aggregate speeds represent a weighted average of median download or upload speeds aggregated across all four carriers (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon) in a given market.

To provide both consumers and enterprises alike with the most current and accurate picture of mobile performance available, RootMetrics has begun testing at the metro, state, and national levels in 2H 2019, and results from our latest testing are in the process of being published on

About RootMetrics by IHS Markit ( RootMetrics by IHS Markit provides mobile analytics that measure mobile network performance and offer insights into the consumer mobile experience. IHS Markit provides data on mobile network performance to help the networks improve and give consumers an end-to-end look at mobile performance. To ensure that RootMetrics reflects real-world mobile usage, testing is conducted based on where, when and how consumers use their smartphones most often.

About IHS Markit (

IHS Markit (NYSE: INFO) is a world leader in critical information, analytics and solutions for the major industries and markets that drive economies worldwide. The company delivers next-generation information, analytics and solutions to customers in business, finance and government, improving their operational efficiency and providing deep insights that lead to well-informed, confident decisions. IHS Markit has more than 50,000 business and government customers, including 80 percent of the Fortune Global 500 and the world’s leading financial institutions. Headquartered in London, IHS Markit is committed to sustainable, profitable growth.

IHS Markit and RootMetrics are registered trademarks of IHS Markit Ltd. and/or its affiliates. All other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners © 2019 IHS Markit Ltd. All rights reserved.

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