AT&T Says Verizon's 5G Wireless Is More Hype Than Reality


Verizon may have revealed its plan to carry out field trials for its so-called next-generation 5G wireless service next year and told the public that it may deploy the technology in 2017. The chief executive of AT&T Mobility, however, seems to be a buzzkill.

At the CTIA Wireless industry trade show last week, Glenn Lurie, AT&T Mobility CEO, said the industry has been good at overpromising as well as underdelivering in terms of new technology. This is in response to Verizon's plan to launch its 5G technology in the near future.

"We're not at a point to be making promises or commitments to customers as to what 5G is," Lurie stated.

It has been reported that 2020 could mark the beginning of a wider adoption of 5G wireless technology, which boasts significantly higher speeds to customers. It seems, however, that Verizon wishes to overtake its rivals in introducing the wireless service to the general public, in a bid to become the country's leading wireless network.

When the time comes, reports say, users can expect speeds of up to 50 times as fast as 4G LTE. Loading up a movie on a mobile phone will also be smoother as it will only take the user 15 seconds to play it. At present, it takes six minutes for a movie to load on a mobile phone.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson from Verizon responded to the AT&T executive's comments in an interview.

"Innovation happens when you're willing to look at things a little differently than others, and you're willing to put in the hard work to make your vision a reality," the Verizon spokesperson says.

While Lurie seems to splash cold water on Verizon's plan to test the technology in 2016, some reports point out Lurie has a point. The possibility of moving toward 5G technology seems premature since the industry has not yet set any standards to comply with.

"Let's make sure that before we start hyping what it's going to be, that those standards are agreed to," stated Lurie.

In 2008, when Verizon also started testing its 4G LTE, it was reported that AT&T also downplayed the potential benefits of the technology. It said the devices' batteries would drain quickly with 4G.

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