An independent report carried out by US company RootMetrics shows Three trailing both Eir/Meteor and Vodafone in Ireland on overall network performance.
The testing took the country’s three largest urban centres - Dublin, Cork and Limerick - as its test bases with Three ranked third in two of the cities and second in another.
Conversely, Eir/Meteor was ranked the best mobile network in two cities - Cork and Limerick - making it the country’s highest ranked network. Vodafone topped the pile in Dublin, was the second best in Cork and the worst in Limerick.
Three was Limerick’s second best performing network but finished last in the rankings in both Cork and Dublin.
All operators performed well overall with scores, out of 100, in the mid-90s and only a few percentage points between the best and worst performing networks.
A spokesperson for Three said it was happy with the results considering it is in the middle of a €300m upgrade following the merger of Three and O2.
The network performed best in Limerick where some upgrade work has been completed, unlike Cork and Dublin where work will begin in the coming months.
Vodafone said it had recently been independently been assessed by mobile performance testing company, P3 as best in class and added the RootMetrics findings are not consistent with P3 or Comreg test results.
Meanwhile, Eir Mobile Networks Director Fergal McCann said he was “really pleased” with the results.
In compiling the rankings, RootMetrics measured performance across activities like checking email, browsing web pages, using apps, making calls, and sending texts.
The analysis takes account of network reliability and speed; data performance; call and text - all of which then feed into an overall performance ranking.
In Limerick, Eir/Meteor won or shared top spot across all six performance categories while Vodafone enjoyed the same success in the capital.
The situation in Cork was a little less clear with little to choose between Eir/Meteor and Vodafone although the latter did come out on top in terms of network speed, data performance and text performance.