Mobile teases "9G" because it's as true as AT&T's "5G E"

Judy Cobb
January 11, 2019

Now that 5G E icon has begun rolling out, and T-Mobile chose to poke fun at it. It's still LTE, but with some optimizations to speed things up, otherwise known as LTE Advanced and LTE Advanced Pro. Other carriers have, unsurprisingly, called foul over AT&T's misleading marketing (which may actually have to do with the fact that it had blindsided them). Whether those customers understand that it isn't really 5G, however, is another question.

"Every company is guilty of building a narrative of how you want the world to work".

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. T-Mobile, for example, trolled AT&T with a video clip on Twitter that shows someone placing a "9G" sticker on their smartphone. AT&T's so-called "5G E" network uses advanced 4G technologies - much like T-Mobile, Sprint and Verizon.

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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"The T-Mobile team delivered our best customer results ever in Q4 2018, and we did it in a competitive climate while working hard to complete our merger with Sprint", said T-Mobile CEO John Legere.

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. "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", Verizon added.

Don't think you've got 5G cellular service just because of that that 5GE logo on the top of your phones.

"We won't take an old phone and just change the software to turn the 4 in the status bar into a 5", Verizon added. Donovan's comment about creating a narrative suggests the company is well aware of this.

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