With all three of the major US cell carriers now sporting the iPhone in their arsenal, consumers have never had it so good. Not only can you now choose which iPhone to buy, but you can also choose which carrier to run it on.

Choosing a carrier isn’t always the easiest thing in the world, but a new study by Metrico Wireless sheds some light onto the decision, and depending on whether voice or data is the most important thing in your world, the best carrier for you may well vary.

According to Metrico’s numbers, AT&T is currently the top dog if you need your data speeds to be as fast as possible, but if you’re more of a talker than a surfer, Verizon may be the best choice for your hard-earned dollar…

In order to reach its conclusions, Metrico performed more than 21,000 web-page downloads, 8,000 download/upload tests, and 6,000 voice calls across a variety of situations. The end results offer an insight into the call failure rate and data transfer speeds of Sprint, Verizon, and AT&T.

When it comes to actually talking with people, Verizon is clearly the winner with a 2.1% failure rate. AT&T’s 2.8% and Sprint’s 3.7% may surprise some, but with the lowest of the three numbers, it is clear that Verizon is the more stable voice network.

It is a different story when it comes to data, though. Here, AT&T wins with a higher upload and download speed when compared to its two iPhone-toting competitors. In fact, AT&T’s download speeds are around twice as fast as those of both Sprint and Verizon. The reason for this is perhaps the addition of HSPA+, but with the iPhone 4 also offering similar speeds despite supporting the ‘faux-G’ standard, AT&T may just have the better network.

With AT&T receiving such hatred over the last few years due to its data speeds and poor reception quality, it is interesting to see them sitting pretty at the top of the pile. This is a testament to the attention they have clearly given to their shortcomings.

Now we just need to be able to make a call on AT&T, too.

[The Next Web]