AT&T is pretending like 5G is already here - and misleading users

The ATT logo on the side of an office building with a blue sky with pink clouds in the background

The ATT logo on the side of an office building with a blue sky with pink clouds in the background

AT&T's "5G E" service is, therefore, nothing of the sort.

Credit: AT&TInstead, the "5G" is actually just two-thirds of a "5GE" icon.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere addressed the situation in his recent 2019 predictions blog post, saying that AT&T would "basically be lying to their customers" with this 5G E icon and promising that he and the rest of T-Mo "will continue to call them on it". Nobody would blame customers for being confused, though, because the E is in a smaller font, and spaced slightly apart from the 5G. Right now, AT&T doesn't have any device on its roster that boasts actual 5G capabilities.

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While AT&T pretends to kick off the 5G mobile era early by slapping a 5G network indicator on 4G phones, Verizon Wireless says it won't be doing the same.

As you might expect, the competition is ripping on this marketing practice.

"If network providers, equipment manufacturers, handset makers, app developers and others in the wireless ecosystem engage in behavior created to purposefully confuse consumers, public officials and the investment community about what 5G really is, we risk alienating the very people we want most to join in developing and harnessing this exciting new technology", Malady wrote. But, as if Verizon were Coke and AT&T were Pepsi, Malady didn't even include AT&T's name in the article. In a post to Twitter, T-Mobile simply said "didn't realize it was this easy, brb updating", alongside a video which shows someone taping a piece of paper that says "9G" over an iPhone's LTE logo. "We will not call our 4G network a 5G network if customers don't experience a performance or capability upgrade that only 5G can deliver".

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