5G and 4G LTE networks from T-Mobile.

Screenshot by Corinne Reichert / CNET

According to a new analysis report from Ookla, T-Mobile has almost 20 times more 5G cities than AT&T and Verizon combined. T-Mobile has 5G in 5,013 cities – and that was before Added to Sprint's former 5G locations after the airline's merger with Sprint worth $ 26.5 billion – while AT&T has 237 5G cities and Verizon 39.

Verizon, however, was by far the fastest speed at 870 compared to AT&T 78 and T-Mobile 64 in Ookla's report.

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"Only T-Mobile is doing the hard work to provide 5G coverage and performance. Sure, it would be easier to achieve rapid speeds in stamp-sized areas like Verizon, but our strategy is different," said Neville Ray, President of Technology at T-Mobile. "T-Mobile's strategy is based on providing a meaningful 5G experience that people can actually use."

Continue reading: Verizon vs. AT&T vs. T-Mobile vs. Sprint comparison: How to choose the best 5G carrier for you

According to Ookla, there are now 5,164 5G cities in the United States.

A study from OpenSignal last week found similar Verizon's 5G network offers the fastest speeds, while T-Mobile offers the best coverage.

According to T-Mobile, the 5G network reaches 225 million people. Here you can see the 5G coverage cards from T-Mobile.

However, according to AT&T, T-Mobile compares apples to oranges by counting all the individual cities within a subway area to reach this figure of over 5,000. For example, AT&T Boston counts as a metropolitan area in contrast to the cities of Cambridge, Somerville, Brookline, Newtown, etc. A fairer comparison AT&T expects its 5G networks to cover 179 million people compared to the 225 million people at T-Mobile.

AT&T also says the 5G network covers 355 cities, not 237, as stated in Ookla's report.


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The three network operators also use different radio waves for their 5G networks: Verizon uses a 5G high-band millimeter-wave 5G spectrum, while AT&T uses an 850 MHz spectrum for its 5G low-band network. AT&T will also use a new technology called Dynamic Spectrum Sharing to share its 4G radio waves with 5G and improve performance this summer. T-Mobile also uses 600 MHz in the low-band range, but now also integrates Sprint's 2.5 GHz medium-band spectrum.

High-band 5G networks offer high speeds with limited coverage. Low-band 5G has better coverage, but slower speeds. Mid band is a combination of both.

Verizon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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