The nation's most populous metro areas -- New York and Los Angeles -- again finished below average in the latest test of mobile network performance for the largest 125 metro areas conducted by RootMetrics.
New York, with 18.3 million people, finished 76th out of 125 in the second half of 2015, dropping from 74th in the first half of last year. Los Angeles dropped from 89th to 94th for the same two periods, RootMetrics announced today.
Meanwhile, Atlanta and Chicago finished at the top in the rankings: No. 1 and No. 2 overall, respectively. That's a repeat from their first half 2015 performance.
RootMetrics conducted 3.8 million tests in all 125 metro areas with actual smartphones on the major U.S. carriers -- Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. The testing led to metro area rankings for overall network performance, network reliability, network speed, data performance, call performance and text performance.
The top five metro areas in order were Atlanta, Chicago, Indianapolis, Sacramento, Calif. and Rockford, Ill. The five at the bottom were Hudson Valley, N.Y. (in 125th place), then in reverse order: Omaha, Neb., Lancaster, Pa., Santa Rosa, Calif. and Denver. The results for each city can be found on the RootMetrics website.
RootMetrics said some cities showed dramatic improvements in wireless network performance in the second half of 2015. Dallas garnered a No. 8 ranking overall in the second half after improving in network reliability and speed.
Indianapolis showed a "meteoric" rise to No. 3 in overall performance, after ranking 51st in the previous report. A key reason: very high marks for getting connected and staying connected using each of the four carriers' networks. The city also had fewer blocked calls on all four carriers.