The Desk appreciates the support of readers who purchase products or services through links on our website. Learn more...

T-Mobile will ease marketing claims of “superior” 5G network

The agreement comes amid a suggestion from a national advertising board and a complaint from rival Verizon.

The agreement comes amid a suggestion from a national advertising board and a complaint from rival Verizon.

Wireless phone company T-Mobile has agreed to stop marketing its 5G network as “more reliable” than its competitors following a suggestion from the National Advertising Review Board and a complaint from rival Verizon.

The complaint stemmed from an online video featuring William Nye, better known as “Bill Nye the Science Guy,” in which he touted that T-Mobile’s decision to use mid-band spectrum made its 5G network more reliable than Verizon’s decision to use milli-meter wave spectrum.

“Other carriers have 5G signals that drop if you move two feet,” Nye said in the video, which was produced by T-Mobile.

Nye demonstrated Verizon’s supposedly inferior 5G service to T-Mobile’s by using mannequins. Verizon complained to the National Advertising Review Board (NARB), which is part of the not-for-profit Better Business Bureau.

The NARB said T-Mobile shouldn’t imply that Verizon’s 5G service “is so limited in any area as to cover only the space taken up by a single bench,” according to a decision handed down earlier this week. But the board said T-Mobile could continue to make claims that its network coverage is better than Verizon’s in future ads.

On Monday, a T-Mobile spokesperson said the company would abide by the board’s decision and affirmed its appreciation “that the panel agreed that T-Mobile can continue to advertise its superior 5G coverage without qualification.”

Photo of author

About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).