Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile have been engaged in a fierce and occasionally ugly battle for US wireless industry supremacy for many years now, often resorting to childish insults (cough, John Legere, cough) and misleading ads to “prove” their superiority over the competition.
While the latter tactic is pretty much as old as time, it feels as though the organization in charge of regulating and policing this aspect is taking its mission more seriously than ever lately. Of course, that might simply be a result of a growing number of recent complaints from the three aforementioned carriers against one another.
A powerful 5G and the most powerful 5G experience are not the same thing
Unsurprisingly, the nation’s largest wireless service provider elevated the matter to the National Advertising Review Board (NARB), which predictably enough largely agreed with the NAD’s argument
that Verizon has no way to prove it currently operates or will at any point operate the “most powerful” 5G network in the US.
As such, while the NARB can’t force Big Red to do anything, its recommendation calls for the removal of the claim that “Verizon is building the most powerful 5G experience for America” from a pair of sports-themed commercials, which the carrier fully plans to comply with.
The industry-leading cellular company was able to find a small win in the NARB’s decision, as the challenged claim can be replaced with the slightly weaker “Verizon is building a powerful 5G experience for America” slogan. Even though the definition of a “powerful” network as opposed to a fast or widespread cellular signal remains unclear, there’s no question that Verizon
is in the process of deploying something great. We simply can’t know if this will be the greatest service of its kind… yet.
Will T-Mobile qualify for “the most powerful” label down the line?
When it comes to theoretical coverage
and actual availability
, however, T-Mobile has a massive lead over both Verizon and AT&T, not to mention plenty of room for further expansion and important speed upgrades.
Magenta’s three-layer 5G
cake could eventually strike the perfect balance between speed and availability, at which point it’s going to be pretty easy to objectively proclaim the nation’s greatest, and yes, perhaps even the most powerful wireless network.
Of course, Verizon shouldn’t be ruled out of contention yet, working hard to catch up to the combined T-Mobile/Sprint juggernaut by preparing its very own belated “nationwide” 5G rollout
, as well as a standalone core launch
and key mid-band spectrum acquisitions potentially allowing it to serve a full “layer cake” too.