Verizon is assuring customers that "when it says '5G,' it means 5G."
This comes hot on the heels of AT&T's misleading "5G E," which is its marketing term for its advanced version of its 4G LTE.
Fake 5G Logo
Recently, AT&T rolled out a software update to some of its phones that changed the usual 4G LTE indicator to "5G E," which stands for "5G Evolution." The Samsung Galaxy S8 Active, LG V30, and LG V40 are among the devices that received this update, and whenever they connect to certain portions of the carrier's network, they'll display the inaccurate icon.
In response, Verizon released a statement regarding the matter.
"We won't take an old phone and just change the software to turn the 4 in the status bar into a 5. 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," the company's Chief Technology Officer Kyle Malady said.
It's also urging the industry to only say it's 5G when "new device hardware" makes a connection using "new radio technology" to provide "new capabilities."
Familiarity Breeds Contempt?
Ars Technica points out that Verizon also somewhat jumped the gun on 5G by using it in one of its services that doesn't meet the standard of the industry.
The product in question is the carrier's 5G home internet service, which isn't based on the 5G NR or New Radio global standard. Instead, it's based on its own take of 5G technology.
However, in Verizon's defense, its 5G is a significant upgrade over its previous 4G implementation. This is in contrast with AT&T's "upgrade," which is more of an icon update than a speed increase.
Rivals Speak Up
Verizon isn't the only carrier that's voicing its opinion on AT&T's actions. T-Mobile also posted a short clip on Twitter where a person is seen placing a "9G" sticker over an iPhone's LTE indicator.
Not to be left out, Sprint also chimed in and took shots at AT&T.
"AT&T is blatantly misleading consumers — 5GE is not real 5G," Sprint CTO John Saw told Engadget.