AT&T gets burned by rivals over its fake 5G network

ATT 5G E Logo

The problem with this labeling is straightforward: While it's true that there's a technical path for 4G LTE service to evolve into 5G, that evolution hasn't happened yet. These technologies serve as the runway to 5G by boosting the existing LTE network and priming it for the future of connectivity. And once again, AT&T is leading the charge following its decision to mislead subscribers by slapping a silly new "5G" icon on 4G smartphones. And Tom's Guide rightfully points out that people with 5G E devices will still need to buy 5G devices anyway if they want real 5G. In it, Kyle Malady, Verizon's chief technical officer, writes, "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".

AT&T didn't specify exactly what kind of sub-6GHz spectrum it might use for its 5G effort, but the carrier owns spectrum in bands ranging from 700MHz to 2.3GHz. Test cases such as Hurricane Florence and the California wildfires have also shown the idea of giving first responders a dedicated network, free from congestion from other users, can help safety officials do their job.

Still, Verizon's 5G home Internet seems like a real upgrade over Verizon 4G; Verizon's early 5G uses 28GHz spectrum instead of the low-band spectrum used for 4G, and Verizon says its 5G home Internet can hit speeds of almost 1Gbps. Yeah, T-Mobile was one of the offenders, just like AT&T. On Twitter, T-Mobile posted a video where it applied a 9G sticker to an iPhone, and captioned the clip, "didn't realize it was this easy, brb updating".

Not to be left out, Sprint also chimed in and took shots at AT&T.

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This isn't the first time that T-Mobile has mocked AT&T over its 5G plans.

Overall T-Mobile's business is strong going into the new year. AT&T had announced that it would first launch some "pucks" for its 5G network, which are essentially 5G hotspots.

The results come ahead of T-Mobile and Sprint continuing to work through their proposed $26 billion merger that will integrate the third- and forth-biggest wireless carriers in the US.

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