This week Sprint filed a lawsuit against AT&T in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York alleging violations of both federal and state law. Not only is Sprint requesting that AT&T be stopped from using 5G Evolution, 5GE, and any 5G branding until its network is 5G-standards compliant, Sprint is also seeking damages including corrective advertisements and removal of whatever profits AT&T has made from the marketing.
The core of the issue here is AT&T is using 5G Evolution or 5GE for what competitors are claiming is really an updated 4G network with a 5G name.
In the court case Sprint said: “AT&T’s advertisements are a transparent attempt to influence consumers’ purchasing decisions by deceiving them into believing that AT&T’s network—because it claims to be a 5G wireless network—is more technologically advanced and of higher quality than those of other wireless service providers, including Sprint.”
AT&T issued the following statement:
“We understand why our competitors don’t like what we are doing, but our customers love it. We introduced 5G Evolution more than two years ago, clearly defining it as an evolutionary step to standards-based 5G. 5G Evolution and the 5GE indicator simply let customers know when their device is in an area where speeds up to twice as fast as standard LTE are available. That’s what 5G Evolution is, and we are delighted to deliver it to our customers.
We will fight this lawsuit while continuing to deploy 5G Evolution in addition to standards-based mobile 5G. Customers want and deserve to know when they are getting better speeds. Sprint will have to reconcile its arguments to the FCC that it cannot deploy a widespread 5G network without T-Mobile while simultaneously claiming in this suit to be launching ‘legitimate 5G technology imminently.”
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