Trending: Warren denounces Amazon for ‘trying to tilt the Seattle City Council elections’ with $1.45M
Inside the SEA-TAC airport. Photo via Flickr user Robert Scoble.
Inside the SEA-TAC airport. Photo via Flickr user Robert Scoble.

For many travelers, it’s important to have reliable mobile connections at the airport. You may need to access ticket information, download an important document, or simply want to spend your layover getting some work done online.

But which airports — and which carriers — offer the best download speeds? RootMetrics has some answers.

The Seattle-based wireless metrics company published a new study today that ranked the 50 busiest U.S. airports by overall mobile data performance. Based on metrics like email downloads, data file loading times, and upload/download speeds, RootMetrics tested the nation’s four top carriers at each airport.

Here were the top five that had the best overall data performance:

  1. Southwest Florida International Airport (Fort Meyers, FL)
  2. O’Hare International Airport (Chicago, IL)
  3. John Wayne Airport – Orange County (CA)
  4. Memphis International Airport
  5. General Mitchell International Airport (Milwaukee, WI)

rootmetricsAs far as individual carriers, Verizon came out on top at 30 of the airports, an increase from 19 airports last year when RootMetrics conducted the same study.

T-Mobile also saw better performance, as the Bellevue-based company ranked No. 1 at 20 airports after finishing first at just nine last year.

AT&T, which had the best speeds at 36 airports last year, saw a big drop and had the fastest speeds at just 11 airports.

As far as Seattle Tacoma International, T-Mobile and Verizon shared the award for top-performing carrier. The airport itself ranked No. 17, while Portland International Airport came in at No. 23.

The airports with the slowest data speeds included Newark Liberty International, Minneapolis-St. Paul International, and San Diego International.

See the full list here, and see RootMetrics’ methodology here.

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to GeekWire's free newsletters to catch every headline


Job Listings on GeekWork

Find more jobs on GeekWork. Employers, post a job here.