Sprint calls AT&T's '5G E' branding 'fake 5G' in letter to consumers, promises own 5G netw...

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 11
Sprint in an open letter to consumers derides AT&T for its "5G Evolution" advertising push, saying accompanying "5G E" connectivity branding -- soon to land on iPhone with iOS 12.2 -- is a gambit designed to mislead consumers.

Sprint
Source: Sprint


The letter (PDF link), distributed as a full-page ad in The New York Times on Sunday, is the latest effort from rival U.S. cellular carriers attempting to inform consumers of AT&T's controversial marketing scheme.

"While Sprint is working hard to deliver mobile 5G and the first 5G smartphone in the U.S., AT&T is hard at work trying to convince you that they already won the race to 5G with something they call '5G Evolution.' That is simply untrue," the letter reads. "Don't be fooled. 5G Evolution isn't new or true 5G. It is fake 5G."

AT&T in 2018 assigned the 5G Evolution label to a 5G foundation network currently being deployed across the U.S. Built on existing LTE technology, 5G Evolution can hit a theoretical 400Mbps, well below gigabit speeds promised by ratified 5G standards.

The nation's second-largest cellular provider by subscribers is rolling out a standards-based mobile 5G network that utilizes millimeter wave spectrum technology, but coverage is currently limited to select locations and connectivity requires a Netgear Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot.

In January, AT&T began selling devices that displayed a "5G E" connection icon when connected to upgraded cell towers in 5G Evolution markets. The move drew criticism from competing carriers who argue the designation is a misnomer, including executives from Verizon and Sprint who called the practice "misleading."

David Tovar, Sprint's senior vice president of corporate communications, echoed the sentiment in a statement this week.

"AT&T is not offering its customers 5G but is delighted by the confusion they've caused with their deceptive 5G E' marketing and attempt to convince consumers that they've already won the 5G race," Tovar said. "We're not standing for this kind of deception, and neither should consumers. We already filed a lawsuit in federal court asking that AT&T be stopped, and now we're further exposing AT&T's false claims. Every carrier - every company - should tell consumers the truth and be held accountable for the promises they make."

Sprint goes on to provide statistics from a commissioned survey that found 54 percent of respondents believe "5G E" branding denotes a network with the same or better performance than a standards-based 5G network. Further, 43 percent of consumers mistakenly believe AT&T phones can connect to a 5G network, the survey said.

Apple's iPhone and iPad products, which have so far gone untouched by AT&T's branding, will soon display 5G E iconography with the release of iOS 12.2. The graphical assets first popped up in beta versions of the mobile operating system in February.

Sunday's open letter follows similar outcries and publicly issued condemnations from industry competitors, all of which are investing heavily in their own respective transitions to 5G. Sprint, for example, plans introduce "real mobile 5G" in nine major metropolitan areas this summer.
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 21
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,162member
    Bottom line? They ALL lie through their teeth when it comes to marketing.
    dewmejbdragoncornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 21
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,989member
    Look who is complaining !! Sprint, sorry you are no prize either.
    deminsdwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 21
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 1,563member
    lkrupp said:
    Bottom line? They ALL lie through their teeth when it comes to marketing.
    True, but the whole ‘5GE’ thing is pretty blatant deception. Even my brother in law who works for AT&T agrees.
    cornchipchasm1st
  • Reply 4 of 21
    entropysentropys Posts: 1,804member
    Imagine being in a meeting where the arsehole marketing weenies dreamt up this scam. All self re-enforcing backslapping at their mutual contempt for the customer.
    jbdragoncornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 21
    microbemicrobe Posts: 41member
    At some point will Tim Apple realize this mislabeled stunted performance will give his phones a bad reputation for the future real 5G world? I’m very surprised Apple will permit this.
    GeorgeBMacbaconstangmld53acornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 21
    mcdavemcdave Posts: 1,169member
    microbe said:
    At some point will Tim Apple realize this mislabeled stunted performance will give his phones a bad reputation for the future real 5G world? I’m very surprised Apple will permit this.
    Agreed, they should look to distance themselves.
    GeorgeBMacwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 21
    seanismorrisseanismorris Posts: 1,036member
    Sprint, with their fake customer support is going to protect me from AT&T’s fake 5G.

    It brings a tear to my eye... /s
    deminsdcornchipllama
  • Reply 8 of 21
    seanismorrisseanismorris Posts: 1,036member
    MplsP said:
    lkrupp said:
    Bottom line? They ALL lie through their teeth when it comes to marketing.
    True, but the whole ‘5GE’ thing is pretty blatant deception. Even my brother in law who works for AT&T agrees.
    Honor among thieves?  Not even that...
    cornchip
  • Reply 9 of 21
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,954member
    lkrupp said:
    Bottom line? They ALL lie through their teeth when it comes to marketing.
    I think we need to stop this "They ALL do it...." crap.   Instead of holding a company (or a politician) responsible for their own actions, the current mode is to spread blame across all -- so that everybody and nobody is held responsible.

    In this case, one company is using false advertising.   Call it that.   Hold them responsible. 
    If another company does that or something else wrong, then hold them responsible for for what they do.  
    Don't muddy the waters with this "They all do it" nonsense.  It's become a way to dismiss bad behavior. 
    mld53aauxiochasmmobirdMplsP
  • Reply 10 of 21
    AT&T’s crass marketing move pales next to the 8,729,346 consumer items that have been emblazoned with “HD” over the last two decades to connote quality even though they have nothing to do with high definition anything.

    ‘The public are swine; advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill-bucket.’

    “Keep the Aspidistra Flying” by George Orwell

    edited March 12 baconstangcornchip
  • Reply 11 of 21
    mnbob1mnbob1 Posts: 263member
    If I remember correctly AT&T did the same thing with 4G. They rebranded the faster 3G as 4G and that's what appeared on the iPhone. Their network wasn't ready for 4G so they fooled the public into thinking they were getting the 4G speeds.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 21
    mld53amld53a Posts: 9member
    Sprint, with their fake customer support is going to protect me from AT&T’s fake 5G.

    It brings a tear to my eye... /s
    Two wrongs don’t make a right. Unless your a politician. 
  • Reply 13 of 21
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 2,150member
    microbe said:
    At some point will Tim Apple realize this mislabeled stunted performance will give his phones a bad reputation for the future real 5G world? I’m very surprised Apple will permit this.
    I assume if Apple didn't agree then the iPhone wouldn't be allowed on their Network. AT&T is pretty large. In the early days of Smartphones, Apple had leverage, these days, there's a lot of Android options.
  • Reply 14 of 21
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,355member
    lkrupp said:
    Bottom line? They ALL lie through their teeth when it comes to marketing.
    You just summed up 'marketing'  in a nutshell.
    cornchip
  • Reply 15 of 21
    dewmedewme Posts: 2,125member
    Unless there is a standards organization that has the authority and wherewithal to enforce branding and logos related to "5G" conformance and compliance there is not much that can be done to prevent product makers and/or service providers from willfully deceiving their customers with their own home brew logos. One vendor making a point to rat out the deceit of another vendor makes for good soap opera and politics, but it's all bluster and noise. There is little doubt that AT&T could dredge up a bucketful of dirt against Sprint - because, you know what, all of the players in their line of business are unsavory and deceptive to the core. Whether it's politics or marketing, pointing out the fact that "the other person" is a lying sack of s*** when you know very well that "your person" is also a lying sack of s*** makes for good comedy, but in the end it is always the consumers who are the losers, or in this case, Losers with an E.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 21
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,362member
    lkrupp said:
    Bottom line? They ALL lie through their teeth when it comes to marketing.

    I'll just leave this here.



    dewmewatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 21
    Interesting that Apple had no problem allowing AT&T to add the fake 5G E to the title bar of its iPhones. That makes Apple complicit in the deception. It really makes you wonder what is going on in the Apple board room these days? What would make Tim Cook give up that amount of trust by its customers?
    llama
  • Reply 18 of 21
    chasmchasm Posts: 1,643member
    I'm glad to see Sprint following T-Mob's lead in decrying the blatantly misleading "5Ge" debacle. In countries where there are advertising regulators with real teeth, none of this would be allowed and it would be stopped and fined immediately. Good luck trying to get this US administration to care about an obvious scam, especially the FCC, but perhaps there are still some true public servants left at the FTC who could step in and put paid to this deception.

    A more effective campaign would be to a) make this fraud go viral on social media, and b) be sure to contact AT&T and tell them you don't do business with companies that work to deceive and mislead their customers.
  • Reply 19 of 21
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 4,954member
    dewme said:
    Unless there is a standards organization that has the authority and wherewithal to enforce branding and logos related to "5G" conformance and compliance there is not much that can be done to prevent product makers and/or service providers from willfully deceiving their customers with their own home brew logos. One vendor making a point to rat out the deceit of another vendor makes for good soap opera and politics, but it's all bluster and noise. There is little doubt that AT&T could dredge up a bucketful of dirt against Sprint - because, you know what, all of the players in their line of business are unsavory and deceptive to the core. Whether it's politics or marketing, pointing out the fact that "the other person" is a lying sack of s*** when you know very well that "your person" is also a lying sack of s*** makes for good comedy, but in the end it is always the consumers who are the losers, or in this case, Losers with an E.
    So, it's the old "they all do it" excuse...   Why is it that only the fraudsters need to use it (and usually with some false equivalency)?
  • Reply 20 of 21
    1st1st Posts: 383member
    what ever Sprint 5G better not be the VZ type - non standard  = doesn't count either.  It is very costly deployment for true 5G.  for some network, it might be bridge too far (but shouldn't be ATT).  
Sign In or Register to comment.