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1 October 2020

Mobile phone coverage in Northern Ireland

New data from Which? and RootMetrics uncovers the reality of 4G coverage throughout the UK. Find out what it's really like in Northern Ireland and see which provider has the best 4G network.
Copy (1) of Woman on phone outside station
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Hamse Yusuf

All mobile network providers are not created equal. While coverage and reliability around the country is improving, there are still regional differences.

Below you can see the most recent network reliability and network speed scores for Northern Ireland, based on the most recent data from our partner, RootMetrics.

You can also use our mobile coverage map for a more granular analysis of where you live.

Best network for overall signal experience in Northern Ireland

A new report by RootMetrics has found that EE and Vodafone mobile phone users in Northern Ireland had the best mobile signal experience. Vodafone just edged it with a RootScore of 94.2. EE got a RootScore of 93.9 with O2 also getting a score in the 90s.

Three was the only network to receive slightly weaker results, scoring 87.6. Although a respectable score, it is behind the other three mobile network operators and makes clear that Three still has work to do to offer a 4G signal more often to users in Northern Ireland.

Find out which network is the best where you live with our free coverage checker.

Best network for download speeds in Northern Ireland

Taking a closer look at download speeds, there is only one winner: EE.

Tests showed EE had the fastest average speeds of 33.4Mbps, which is higher than some entry-level fibre broadband speeds and is far ahead of its rival network operators.

Vodafone, although performing as well as EE in the tests, was only able to achieve just over half the speed EE did with an average of 20.6Mbps.

Three recorded the slowest speeds with an average speed of 12 Mbps, which is less than half the speed that is available to EE users.

Our analysis

The information used in this analysis comes from a regular collaboration between Which? and coverage experts RootMetrics, and is based on over 580,000 measurements taken from multiple outdoor and indoor locations.

Using these measurements, we're able to give a definitive account of the real mobile phone user experience using RootScores. A RootScore is a simple way to translate all the data gathered into clear and easy-to understand marks of performance and is scaled from 0-100. The higher the score, the better.

Read more about the approach, and download the free app, on the RootMetrics website.

Which network do you say is best?

Once you know which networks offer the best coverage where you live and work, you'll want to know which ones offer the best customer service and value for money. We asked 6,100 members of the public to tell us about what they love and hate about their network.

Read the results of our best mobile networks survey to find out the winners and the losers.

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