Whizzz! Mobile connectivity is now beating Wi-Fi speeds

Whizzz! Mobile connectivity is now beating Wi-Fi speeds

Dec 5, 2018 - 12:30 PM - Technology

Cellular download speeds are faster than Wi-Fi in a full 41 percent of 80 countries tested, according to OpenSignal.

A decade ago, Wi-Fi seemed unbeatable — but no more. According to the survey mobile connections are up to 13Mbps faster than Wi-Fi in 33 countries, with 4G speeds being 63 percent faster than Wi-Fi in 50 countries.

Speed differentials varied widely among testing countries:

  • Australian mobile speeds scream at 34.6Mbps compared to Wi-Fi at 21.6 Mbps
  • In Lebanon, mobile reaches 14.8 Mbps, easily besting Wi-Fi’s 2.5 Mbps
  • Taiwan mobile wins with 26.3 Mbps, but is only 1.6 Mbps faster than Wi-Fi
  • In Mexico, mobile users reach 13.4 Mbps while Wi-Fi manages only 11.2 Mbps 

Additional countries where mobile is at least 5Mbps faster included Qatar, Oman, Greece, Czech Republic, Myanmar, Iran, Turkey, Bolivia, Croatia, South Africa, and Egypt. Users in Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Australia; and Greece enjoy 17-25 Mbps faster downloads on mobile than on Wi-Fi. 

Nevertheless, in most places Wi-Fi speeds continue to hold sway over mobile—particularly in the U.S., Singapore, and Hong Kong, on account of their superior home networks.  

With 5G cellular and the latest Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) enabling multi-gigabit speeds and even more reliable connectivity, the industry still has a race on its hands. However because smartphones often automatically switch to known Wi-Fi APs, it'll be interesting to watch if consumer behavior prefers disabling this in some places.