It's no secret that AT&T has received quite a beating from the press. From call quality issues in New York City, to dropped calls nationwide, to overall coverage footprint (not to mention the recent Verizon-AT&T advertisement spat), it's clear that AT&T had some work to do. Over the past year, we've heard about their attempts to bolster their wireless network in to handle the added data traffic and to prepare for the rollout of LTE. If the latest testing by PC World is any indication, AT&T is headed in the right direction.
In the 13 cities tested by PC World, AT&T came in first place in Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, New York, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, and Seattle with 3G download speeds, and every city but one (San Francisco) with 3G upload speeds. As a whole, AT&T's download speeds averaged 67 percent faster than the other three wireless carriers. This comes just months after reports that AT&T users were dropping calls, particularly in high-density areas like New York City and San Francisco. According to PC World's last "Wireless Performance Test," conducted eight months ago, AT&T's 2010 3G performance represents a download speed improvement of 84 percent.
Of course, these numbers don't take into consideration coverage maps, and it isn't indicative of the entire nation. It doesn't mean that your cousin's house in Fargo, North Dakota is going to have spectacular service. What it does say, however, is that AT&T is working hard to address the issue.
For those in the areas listed on the graph, have you noticed better data connections? Call quality? I'd love to hear from you.