"AT&T has sought to gain an unfair advantage in the race to 5G by embarking on a nationwide advertising campaign to deceive consumers into believing that its existing 4G LTE Advanced network is now a 5G network", says Sprint in the filing.
"In its claim, Sprint said it commissioned a survey that found 54 percent of consumers believed the "5GE" networks were the same as or better than 5G, and that 43 percent think if they buy an AT&T phone today it will be 5G capable, even though neither of those things are true". Sprint argues that AT&T practice is damaging the reputation of 5G while they work to build a "legitimate early entry into the 5G network space". Of course, this is not because their mobile phone is really connected to the 5G network (after all, even the hardware of the smartphones does not support 5G), but its simply a marketing gimmick of AT&T, to "deceive users that its 4G LTE is 5G".
"We understand why our competitors don't like what we are doing, but our customers love it".
AT&T reiterated that it introduced 5G Evolution more than two years ago, "clearly defining it as an evolutionary step" on the path towards 5G, said AT&T to Android Authority.
"We feel very comfortable with how we've characterized the new service that we're launching", AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Friday. AT&T's response to the suit seems downright weird and off-topic, especially given that average consumers likely don't know the difference between 5G and 5G E, AT&T's marketing efforts notwithstanding.
AT&T renamed a large portion of its 4G network, calling it "5G E", for "5G Evolution". Sprint will have to reconcile its arguments to the FCC that it can not deploy a widespread 5G network without T-Mobile while simultaneously claiming in this suit to be launching "legitimate 5G technology imminently".
Sprint officials have talked about the carrier's latest and fastest service and have called it Advanced LTE. AT&T is just like Sprint and all the other major wireless carriers now operating a nationwide 4G LTE network. AT&T is just like Sprint and all the other major wireless carriers now operating a nationwide 4G LTE network.
Sprint is suing rival network AT&T over the 5G Evolution branding on its phones. AT&T calls this "new" network 5GE. Verizon Communications spokesman Jeffrey Nelson joked that the "E" means "eventually".
Sprint may be confident in its complaint, but AT&T has fired back by saying, "We will fight this lawsuit while continuing to deploy 5G Evolution in addition to standards-based mobile 5G".