Consumer Reports annual survey of the nation’s wireless carriers, found Verizon Wireless the highest-Rated major carrier with AT&T at the bottom, although AT&T stole the 4G title from Big Red.
The survey polled some 63,000 U.S. wireless subscribers for their thoughts on AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless. Verizon received top marks for voice quality and customer service. Sprint’s network and customer support earned it second-place honors, while T-Mobile rated third and AT&T ranked dead last for the third year in a row.
AT&T’s 4G LTE network outmatched Verizon’s, although AT&T’s network covers about 150 million Americans across 103 markets. Verizon’s network covers more than 300 million Americans across more than 400 markets. AT&T’s LTE speed and performance won top marks.
The report found that no-contract plans can be major cost-savers. Two-thirds of Consumer Reports survey respondents who switched to so-called “prepaid plans,” which typically lack a contract commitment and bill each month in advance, saved more than $20 a month by switching to prepaid.
TracFone was among the top-Rated prepaid providers, receiving high marks for value, voice and text. Like Consumer Cellular, it specializes in those who seek simple, low-cost phone service.