Ookla: Verizon fastest fixed U.S. broadband ISP while Spectrum chalks up highest consistency score

Verizon ruled the roost for fastest U.S. broadband speeds in Ookla's second quarter Speedtest results, and was also tops for lowest latency. For fastest fixed broadband speeds, Comcast, Cox, Charter, AT&T and CenturyLink, respectively, followed on the heels of Verizon.

According to the second quarter results, Verizon posted latency of 9 milliseconds for first-place followed by Cox (12 milliseconds), Comcast (14), Charter (18), AT&T (18) and CenturyLink (22.) With service providers moving more of their applications and services closer to the network edge, low latency becomes a key differentiator for end customers.

“We continue to lead among providers in reliability and speed of our network, providing our customers with a great network experience," Verizon said in a email statement to FierceTelecom. "Verizon has the most awarded network in the country, which reaffirms our leadership across the industry."

Overall, Ookla reported a decline in fixed broadband download speeds in March due to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, but noted download speeds have since rebounded.

Median download speeds over fixed broadband increased by almost 20% during the last year to 86.04 Mbps in Q2 while median upload speeds increased by 1.5% to 11.86 Mbps over the same time frame.

With remote workers, online learning and increased online gaming during the coronavirus pandemic, robust upload speeds were a crucial element for fixed broadband subscribers.

Charter's Spectrum service provided the most consistent internet experience in Q2 with a consistency score of 84.4%, with Speedtest results showing at least a 25 Mbps minimum download speed and 3 Mbps minimum upload speed. Comcast Xfinity was second (84%), Verizon a close third (83.9%), Cox fourth (79.3%), AT&T Internet fifth (70.8%) and CenturyLink sixth (44.9%).

Looking at Ookla Speedtest results by states, Xfinity was the fastest ISP in 16 states during Q2. Verizon was fastest in five states plus the District of Columbia. AT&T Internet, Cox, and Spectrum were each fastest in three states. Ookla said the state level was a good area for smaller ISPs to stand out, which was exemplified by Google Fiber and MetroNet each being the fastest providers in three states.

New Jersey was the fastest state in the U.S. for median download speed over fixed broadband during Q2 at 99.11 Mbps. Massachusetts was second (94.59 Mbps), followed by Rhode Island (94.06 Mbps), New York (93.82 Mbps) and Florida (92.98 Mbps).

Wyoming was the slowest state when it came to median download speed over fixed broadband at 43.82 Mbps during Q2. Montana was second slowest (44.54 Mbps), followed by Idaho (47.46 Mbps), Alaska (47.74 Mbps) and New Mexico (48.00 Mbps).

Looking at the 100 most populous cities in the U.S., Kansas City, Missouri had the fastest median download speed over fixed broadband during the second quarter by posting 132.71 Mbps. San Antonio, Texas was second (123.06 Mbps); Austin was third (122.20 Mbps); Lincoln was fourth (120.19 Mbps) and Raleigh, North Carolina fifth (119.88 Mbps).

Toledo, Ohio was the slowest city on Ookla's list with a download speed over fixed broadband of 48.58 Mbps. Buffalo, New York was second slowest (56.24 Mbps), followed by St. Paul, Minnesota (56.99 Mbps); Boise, Idaho (57.46 Mbps) and Tucson, Arizona (58.32 Mbps).

RELATED: AT&T, T-Mobile outshine Verizon in Q2 mobile performance – Ookla

Ookla’s second quarter results for mobile and fixed broadband were based on 85.1 million consumer-initiated Speedtests from over 1.6 million unique mobile user devices and 18.9 million fixed broadband devices.