I was scanning the mobile-tech news and saw a story on a performance shootout between the LTE implementations from Verizon and AT&T; I skipped by the link and can’t find it now, but that’s OK because I’m here to debunk it.
The study found that A’s LTE went to 45M/sec whereas V’s was only 35, or maybe the other way around, and maybe the numbers aren’t quite right.
It Doesn’t Matter · As the user of a 50M/sec home network via my local cable company, I have found these things to be true:
There are very few sources of interesting data on the Web that can reach double-digit MB/second.
The single exception is BitTorrent, which for something that’s reasonably popular with lots of trackers, can achieve simply spine-chilling, mind-boggling performance on a 50M cable hookup.
The fast wire is also handy when several people in the household want to do Skype and gaming and YouTubing at the same time, without colliding.
I don’t think people really want to run BitTorrent on their phones, that much, and I observe that most mobile devices, most times, are only being used by one person. I think that, for all practical purposes, somewhere in the single-digit MB/second range is “fast enough”.
Also: The thought of trying to write an Android or iOS app on realistic hardware that could actually soak up data at those rates and, you know, do something with it, makes my blood run cold.
Now, maybe the networks want everyone to unplug their home and office wiring, and do all their fun and games and work and multimedia via 4G? But I don’t think so, just yet.
What I Want · I want wireless data and I want it to be fast enough; but just as important, I want it to be reliably there, with a low consistent ping time, wherever I am. Also, I want it unfiltered and unchoked and network-neutral. Can we please benchmark those things instead?