Are you considering T-Mobile’s Home Internet package for your household?
As T-Mobile’s 4G and 5G network coverage continues to expand, more and more people are considering this as the primary internet service provider for their homes.
Being that it is wireless internet however, you may be wondering – is T-Mobile home internet good for gaming?
In this article, we’ll cover everything that you need to know!
Is T-Mobile 5G Home Internet Good For Gaming?
Generally speaking, T-Mobile’s home internet package is great for gaming provided that you are in an area with decent coverage.
We’ve judged this based on a few factors:
Speed: Most people report speeds between 50 mbps and 150 mbps. This is more than enough not only for live multiplayer games, but is also more than enough for downloading large games as well. However, during peak hours T-Mobile’s internet can get a bit congested, slowing down speeds somewhat.
Ping / Latency: This is one of the most important factors for gaming – even more than internet speed. Being a wireless service, ping unfortunately isn’t as great as DSL, cable or fiber services. However, T-Mobile Home Internet consistently delivers a ping between 50 and 90 ms, which is perfectly fine for even competitive FPS games.
Data Caps: With games being larger than ever, we are happy to know that T-Mobile Home Internet does not have any data caps.
Reliability: T-Mobile’s 5G home internet is only slightly less reliable than wired, land-based options like cable or fiber, as long as you are in an area with good coverage.
All of these factors make T-Mobile a great choice for gaming. Again, cable or fiber are preferred if they are available in your area, and even DSL will give you lower latency. That being said, this shouldn’t stop you from getting T-Mobile if it’s available for your household.
But what about coverage?
T-Mobile Home Internet allows you to cancel the service for a full refund for up to 15 days after activation. So, you can try it out relatively risk-free to see if it will work for your home.
A Word About Dedicated Servers
Note that there is one area where gaming performance seems to suffer, and that’s for games without dedicated servers.
Some games – especially on PC, have players connect directly to a person’s network and use their computer as the server. Because T-Mobile has a moderate or strict NAT type and blocks many incoming connections, there may be issues if other players connect directly to you.
T-Mobile uses something called CGNAT rather than giving you your own IP address. This essentially blocks other players from connecting to you, so your network can’t be the one hosting the game.
Typically, games will check other players to see if they can host it. If a player is available to become the host, then it will usually be transferred over to them automatically.
If everyone has CGNAT however and is unable to accept incoming connections, then the game won’t be able to continue and you may need to join a new lobby.
Most games these days have dedicated servers, which can prevent this problem entirely. However, it is something to keep in mind! If you have trouble, be sure to take advantage of T-Mobile’s refund policy and shop for other options.
Example Games, And Their Performance
Now, let’s look over some example games as well as how they perform on T-Mobile’s 5G Home Internet plan.
FPS Games (Call of Duty, Fortnite, Overwatch, Apex, Etc.)
FPS games are the genre that are most likely to be affected by ping, jitter, and other issues relating to a connection to the server.
This is because while playing competitively against other people, any additional lag spikes or latency can mean the difference between winning or losing a fight.
That being said, while even Starlink’s additional latency can have a serious impact on FPS performance, T-Mobile’s Home Internet package is much better in this regard.
You may only experience an additional 30-50 ms of ping over something like cable of fiber internet, which is practically unnoticeable unless you are gaming professionally.
Improving your reaction time and situational awareness will have a much greater impact on your performance, and in most situations the additional ping is so low that it is hardly noticeable.
RTS Games (League Of Legends, Dota, Etc.)
Like FPS games, real-time strategy games like League of Legnds or Dota 2 are also affected by the increase in latency.
Due to the nature of these games however, the impact isn’t quite as high as it would be for games like Call of Duty or Overwatch 2.
Most people have reported no issues with ping affecting their win rate or the ability to play the game effectively.
MMOs (RuneScape, Guild Wars 2, Elder Scrolls Online)
MMORPGs are almost completely unaffected by T-Mobile’s increased latency, and can be played just as well as using fiber, cable or DSL.
This is true even for gameplay that is considered highly risky, such as bossing or PVP.
While T-Mobile internet may experience slightly more disconnects and service outages than land-based options, they shouldn’t affect gameplay heavily. We recommend testing out T-Mobile in your area using relatively safe options in order to monitor how frequently disconnects occur, before doing anything that puts your items or account at risk.
Sports Games (FIFA, Rocket League, Madden)
Generally speaking, most sports games are okay with T-Mobile Home Internet.
Issues only occur due to some games lack of dedicated servers, especially if playing games that are 1 vs 1. This is due to T-Mobile’s CGNAT, which was mentioned earlier.
This can lead to slightly longer matchmaking times, but shouldn’t affect performance once the game has actually started.
That being said, in certain games the host does have advantage due to the fact that you are connecting to their network – making the discrepancy of each player’s ping even greater.
Is There Any Way To Improve Gaming Performance With T-Mobile Home Internet?
Gaming performance with T-Mobile home internet is already pretty good, but there are a few things to do to improve performance further.
The first is to ensure you are using a wired ethernet connection from your router to your gaming PC or console, as this will provide a faster and more stable connection than T-Mobile’s router.
If an ethernet cable is not possible, try to position the router so it’s as close to your primary gaming device as possible.
Secondly, take note of other devices on the network. If you have another person streaming 4K video or downloading large files on another device, this will impact your internet speed and performance.
Finally, if gaming is extremely important to you and you need as little latency as possible, we recommend getting a second internet provider to your house if one is available.
T-Mobile’s home internet plan is great for gaming, provided that you’re in an area with good coverage.
While DSL, cable and fiber connections are likely to deliver an even better experience, T-Mobile’s 4G and 5G network can handle even competitive FPS games without any issues.
I hope that you’ve found this article helpful. I’ve also put together an article explaining whether or not Starlink is good for gaming as well.
So, we recommend checking it out if you’re shopping around for a new internet service provider.
Finally, if you have any other questions about T-Mobile home internet, please ask them using the comment form below.
Wishing you the best,
– James McAllister