Verizon and T-Mobile Shame AT&T for Marketing Its 4G Network to Consumers as 5G


Fully [H]
Apr 10, 2003
AT&T has released an update that changes the icon on some AT&T phones to display the network type as 5G E. The AT&T network does not have true 5G capabilities; in fact the phones are still operating on the same 4G network as before. AT&T is marketing its beefed up 4G network as 5G Evolution to confuse consumers that its network is 5G.

Verizon and T-Mobile have voiced their displeasure of the tactics deployed by AT&T in various ways. The Chief Technology Officer of Verizon, Kevin Malady penned an open letter denouncing others who "take an old phone and just change the software to turn the 4 in the status bar into a 5." He calls "on the broad wireless industry to commit to labeling something 5G only if new device hardware is connecting to the network using new radio technology to deliver new capabilities." T-Mobile was more succinct by showing a short video of a cellphone being upgraded to 9G with a sticky note labeled as "9G."

We lead by example. And we challenge our competitors, vendors and partners to join us. People need a clear, consistent and simple understanding of 5G so they are able to compare services, plans and products, without having to maneuver through marketing double-speak or technical specifications. Our industry knows 5G will change the world. Let's uphold that promise, while maintaining our integrity. The success of the 5G technological revolution must be measured in truth and fact, not marketing hype.
What's worse is they're running this marketing ploy non-stop. I assume the "E" stands for "Evolution," and they're trying to say it's evolution of the 4G tech. But it only serves to confuse the consumer and the marketplace, and that should be an FTC TiA violation.
I guess they think everyone forgot what AT&T did back in the 3G vs. 4G days as well:

Just update the label on the phone and no one will know the difference. They're phone just got upgraded!!!

FYI, i actually have AT&T, and content with my current service, but still don't agree that AT&T should do shady stuff like this. Oh well, such is the curse for those of us that are technologically savy. We get to be disappointed by stuff like this.
This is one of those times where I think regulation is/would be a good thing.

If the regulating body says X is 5G, then if you label/advertise your service as 5G and don't meet the qualifications there should be recourse. People try and make educated decisions on these labels and at some point they should be trusted.

Now that doesn't do squat when companies get the regulating body to reduce qualifications just so they can meet said standards without putting in the work/tech but that is a separate issue imo.
I hope they crack down on this, get a bit of courage then crack down on TV manufacturers for stuff like "hdready",1million refresh rate, hdr ... Etc etc
This is intentionally misleading consumers aka lying. This kind of shit should be severely punished.
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Funny because none of these are 5G as defined by the standard

Technically no one even hit 4G as it's supposed to be 100 mbit/s on your cell

5G in frequencies lower than 6Ghz is basically operating 4G

Standards based 5G should be between 1 - 20 gbit/s with 1ms latency

Yay for marketing
To be fair, the 3G labeled as 4G was much faster than verizons 3G at the time since the whole HSPA+ thing, but still, it shouldnt be labeled anything other than the current gen network in use, even if it is faster than regular 4G.
not surprised if they are touting 5G speeds on 4G... I get 70Mbit on LTE in my house...on Tmobile

but that is shady on ATT, at least with Tmobile they put the H+ on the display when you had their "4G" speeds. As I recall 40Mbit was not bad at the time :p (long live the HTC HD2 lolololol)
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Pot Meet Kettle...Calling the current deployment of "4g" in the US full 4g is just as misleading if you ask me.
WHY label is as 5Ge
jesus christ
They should have done 4Ge and probably would have gotten kudos

marketing idiots