U.S. Cellular Coverage Map: How U.S. Cellular Compares to AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint

  • U.S. Cellular Coverage
    2 out of 5 overall
  • Verizon Coverage
    5 out of 5 overall
  • AT&T Coverage
    4 out of 5 overall
  • T-Mobile Coverage
    4 out of 5 overall
  • Sprint Coverage
    3 out of 5 overall

Most people have heard of the Big Four carriers: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint, but some may not have heard of U.S. Cellular. Nonetheless, U.S. Cellular is also a major carrier that operates its own cellular network.

However, U.S. Cellular’s 4G network covers less of the United States than Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T, and Sprint (respectively), with only 10.27% nationwide coverage. That said, they have roaming agreements with these other carriers that ensure service for their customers when they are off network.

Our Coverage Map Compared to U.S. Cellular’s

If you take a look at our coverage map, you’re bound to notice how little national coverage U.S. Cellular has. Don’t be alarmed, though—our map only shows 3G and 4G network coverage on U.S. Cellular’s primary network—without the roaming networks. Conversely, the map on U.S. Cellular’s website is much more comprehensive, with only a few spotty areas. That’s because their map reflects not only their primary network coverage but also the coverage provided by other carriers that they partner with. Thanks to these roaming and off-network agreements, you’re likely to receive solid coverage from U.S. Cellular.

U.S. Cellular Coverage: The Good & the Bad

As with any carrier, there are advantages and disadvantages to getting a phone plan through U.S. Cellular. Pros include great coverage via the combination of their core network and roaming networks, and a nice selection of pre and postpaid plan options to choose from. Cons include the absence of an unlimited data plan, and a lack of perks.

The good:

  • They have roaming agreements with all four of the other major carriers to ensure that you have coverage.
  • They have both postpaid and prepaid plan options.
  • U.S. Cellular is tied with Verizon for the highest quality coverage in the North Central region of the United States.
  • They reward postpaid customers who use less than 3GB of data by giving them $10 back per line.

The bad:

  • U.S. Cellular only has 10.27% coverage on their primary network.
  • They don’t have any unlimited data plan options and their data slows to 2G speeds when you reach your limit.
  • Their plans are relatively expensive considering you don’t receive any perks like a subscription to Netflix, Hulu, or HBO.

Before committing to U.S. Cellular, you’ll want to check to make sure that you receive coverage in your area. Checking is easy; simply enter your address into our comparison engine.

U.S. Cellular doesn’t offer any unlimited data plan options and their data slows to 2G speeds when you reach your limit. If unlimited data is your priority, you may want to look into other carriers.

Where U.S. Cellular Has the Best Coverage

Since U.S. Cellular’s primary network only covers 10.27% of the lower 48 states, they partner with Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile to provide you with solid coverage. Because of this, you’ll receive some of the benefits of these networks as well.

If we’re solely talking about U.S. Cellular’s primary network, they have the best coverage in the following states:

  • Iowa
  • Nebraska
  • Wisconsin
  • Kansas
  • Oklahoma

Their solid coverage also extends to parts of Oregon, Washington, North Carolina, Maine, and New Hampshire. Otherwise, most of the contiguous United States is left uncovered by U.S. Cellular’s primary network. The good news is that since they partner with the other main four carriers, their coverage is far more robust and only includes a few spotty areas.

U.S. Cellular Coverage Vs Verizon

U.S. Cellular’s primary network covers just a fraction of the country compared to Verizon’s network, which has 70% coverage. That said, since U.S. Cellular partners with Verizon, U.S. Cellular customers will receive some of the benefits of Verizon’s coverage.

U.S. Cellular Coverage Vs AT&T

U.S. Cellular’s primary network covers 10.27% of the contiguous United States while AT&T’s network, which is the third-best in the country, covers 58%. Again, U.S. Cellular partners with AT&T to provide customers with quality coverage.

U.S. Cellular Coverage Vs T-Mobile

U.S. Cellular falls far behind T-Mobile in the coverage race. T-Mobile covers 59% of the lower 48 states, which is nearly 49% more coverage than U.S. Cellular’s primary network. If you haven’t caught onto the trend by now, U.S. Cellular partners with T-Mobile to ensure their subscribers receive service throughout most of the country.

U.S. Cellular Coverage Vs Sprint

Sprint’s coverage is by far the worst out of the Big Four carriers, covering a mere 27% of the country. They still edge out U.S. Cellular by about 17%, though.

U.S. Cellular Phone Plans

U.S. Cellular has a somewhat limited selection of phone plans available, although they do offer both postpaid and prepaid plans. One of their biggest drawbacks is that they don’t offer an unlimited data plan, while all of the other major carriers do. That said, they do offer data plans capped at 22GB and 25GB, both of which tend to be more than enough data for one person.

A perk that comes with some U.S. Cellular postpaid plans is that you can get paid for the data you don’t use each month. Customers with a 22GB or 25GB plan who use less than 3GB will receive $10 back per line each month.

Postpaid Plans

Prepaid Plans