RootMetrics gives ‘5G Gold’ to Team GB
Written by: Richard Hook | Published:
Tokyo 2020 gold medal on top of mobile phones Britain claimed the fourth most Tokyo 2020 medals, which were made from old mobile phones, and has now finished top of the 'Everyday 5G' podium (credit: saigoneer))

Research specialist RootMetrics has awarded an additional gold to Team GB post-Tokyo 2020, claiming that its ‘Everyday 5G’ metric puts the UK top of its ‘5G Olympics podium’.

The IHS Markit owned research company reported that UK 5G network connections are consistently above 100 Mbit/s in the 16 major cities it tested, while the networks in the US are “lagging way behind”, rarely getting close to 100 Mbit/s across 125 cities.

Report author David Anderson said: “5G in the UK is already fast, and the good news is that 5G has gotten even faster and more widespread since the second half of 2020.”

Within the report, RootMetrics applied its ‘Everyday 5G’ measure which combines network speed and performance from both 5G-only and “5G mixed mode” (“the user experience of “switching between 5G and 4G LTE during the same data activity”). The researchers claim this offers the most accurate picture of the daily “5G experience when connected to 5G, at least a portion of the time” as operators continue to expand 5G coverage.

Measuring UK performance compared to the US, the report found that “not one UK operator delivered an ‘Everyday 5G’ median download speed below 50 Mbit/s in the first half of 2021 compared to all three major carriers clocking speeds below 50 Mbit/s in nearly half of the 125 cities tested in America”.

Alongside international comparisons, the report also ranked the four main UK networks: EE, Vodafone, Three and the recently merged Virgin Media 02. In the RootMetrics testing, EE was the only operator to record 5G availability above 55% in any city, doing so in five of those tested – Birmingham, Cardiff, Leicester, Manchester and Nottingham.

EE’s so-called ‘Everyday 5G’ availability increased in 13 cities compared with testing in 2021, recording the highest availability in 14 out of 16 cites, and EE’s Everyday 5G median download speeds improved in 14 cities in the same period.

Responding to the reports’ findings, Marc Allera, CEO of the EE consumer division at BT Group, said: “Delivering the best mobile experience for our customers is our number one priority, and 5G has a huge role to play in that. Today’s results not only show our superiority in the industry, but also significant improvements since last year, reflecting the continued investment we’re making to deliver 5G to more places and people.”

The other three major operators also had performance successes highlighted in the report with Three network availability and speeds improved in nearly every city, while Vodafone had the fastest Everyday 5G median download speed of all in Glasgow and Virgin Media O2 clocked the fastest Everyday 5G median download speed in more than half the cities tested.


The report concluded: “Since early 5G deployments, all four operators in the UK have been utilising mid-band spectrum for 5G, which is considered a spectrum “sweet spot,” offering both fast speeds and broad geographic coverage.

“[Our findings] seem to bear out the notion that multiple networks in competition with each other are a good and useful thing for the mobile network user base, producing lower prices, faster speeds and more reliable and consistent network performance.”

Download the full report at

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