AT&T claims advanced 4G is '5G'

Angelica Greene
January 11, 2019

To be fair, AT&T isn't exactly hiding the fact that its 5G E or 5G Evolution isn't really 5G at all. AT&T calls it "building a narrative".

However, the move has been widely mocked by AT&T's rivals who have no plans to follow suit, while critics will argue consumers will be confused and misled.

The executive adds that AT&T's infrastructure is 5G-ready, and can be enabled via a software upgrade. T-Mobile, for example, trolled AT&T with a video clip on Twitter that shows someone placing a "9G" sticker on their smartphone.

T-Mobile's outperformance of even Verizon's surprisingly strong numbers is a signal that it's continuing to take the most market share among USA carriers.

Verizon ran a full-page ad in the The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and USA Today with the headline "When we say '5G, ' we mean 5G".

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That's why we're calling 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.

The company added a total of 1.2 million retail postpaid customers in the quarter, Verizon said at the Citi 2019 Global TMT West investor conference.

Verizon has promised to only label products "5G" if the device is actually delivering improved performance equal to 5G capabilities.

The advent of 5G networks will surely feature overpriced phones with designs that must make significant compromises to accommodate 5G antennas, but at least T-Mobile and Verizon phones probably won't feature fake 5G logos - not after they went through the trouble of calling out AT&T for that very thing, right? But those technologies are part of the years-old LTE-Advanced standard, and are already used by Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint on their 4G networks. In light of this, real 5G can't arrive fast enough.

Other reports by GizPress

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