Whose iPhone data is faster, Verizon or AT&T?

Amongst all the other things that Verizon and AT&T can lob at each other in the ever increasingly bitter battle for iPhone subscribers is this: Mean download speed for iPhone 4 on AT&T is twice that on Verizon. This is according to Metrico Wireless, a Maryland-based independent wireless performance research firm. That said, Web pages load in about the same amount of time on iPhone 4's running on either network.

Metrico took thousands of measurements to gauge wireless data on both carriers. While AT&T's iPhone was faster at downloading data, results were notably mixed elsewhere. AT&T performed about 10 percent better in moving vehicles at downloading data. Conversly, when uploading data while stationary the Verizon iPhone performed about 10 percent better in terms of completing data transfer sessions.

Metrico's data seems to validate results publicized last month by Ookla, the company behind the speedtest.net broadband tests. Ookla's data was culled from Verizon and AT&T subscribers using the company's speed test services, Wired reported last month.

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Specifics on the performance of the devices were not released publicly as that data is part of a report the firm is selling for $4,950 USD. In addition to the data comparisons, the report also stacks the iPhone devices against other smartphones available on their respective carriers.

On AT&T, the iPhone performs above average in terms of data speeds, near the middle of the pack in call performance, and below average in Bluetooth sound quality against other smartphones on the carrier.

On Verizon things are slightly different, however. The Verizon model ranks below average in terms of data speeds, although above average in terms of noise cancelling abilities. Speech quality is on par with the average of other smartphones, Metrico said.

We'd like to take an informal poll of our iPhone readers on both carriers. In the comments, please list your location and carrier. Using speedtest.net, take some measurements of your data transfer rates. We'll share the results of this survey in a later story.

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