The ranking is based on responses to the product review publication’s annual satisfaction survey of 58,000 Consumer Reports readers and is part of a larger report on cell phones that will be released on Tuesday. Participants were asked to rate their service and customer support experiences with contract and no-contract providers.
Of all the carriers included, AT&T was the only one to drop significantly in overall satisfaction, receiving an overall score of 60 out of 100.
- Despite iPhone 5S Release, Americans Are Shying Away From New Smartphones
- Break Your Cellphone? Chances Are You Live in One of These Cities
- Is Apple Overpriced? Its Accessories Sure Seem To Be
- How to Get the iPhone 5 If You're Still Under Contract
- FCC Mobile Broadband Test No Match for Cell Carrier 'Wild West'
On the flipside, U.S. Cellular, a regional carrier that provides service in 26 states, beat out longtime leader Verizon Wireless (Stock Quote: VZ) with outstanding marks for value, voice service and customer support. Overall, U.S. Cellular received a total score of 82 while Verizon Wireless, now ranked second, scored 74.
“Our survey suggests that an iPhone from Verizon Wireless, which is rumored, could indeed be good news for iPhone fans,” said Paul Reynolds, Electronics Editor for Consumer Reports, in a written statement.
AT&T responded to the ranking by citing its own studies on its network’s efficiency.
“We take this seriously and we continually look for new ways to improve the customer experience,” an AT&T spokesperson told MainStreet. “The fact is wireless customers have choices and a record number of them chose AT&T in the third quarter, significantly more than our competitors.”
The full report, which also features carrier Ratings in 23 metropolitan markets, can be found on the Consumer Reports website tomorrow and in the January 2011 print issue.
—For the best rates on loans, bank accounts and credit cards, enter your ZIP code at BankingMyWay.com.