AT&T’s misleadingly marketed ‘5G E’ network not faster than 4G on T-Mobile and Verizon

“AT&T’s controversial ‘5G E’ network — really rebranded 4G LTE — may actually be slower than Verizon and T-Mobile’s LTE networks, a newly-published study says,” Roger Fingas reports for AppleInsider.

“5G E-capable devices managed an average download speed of 28.8 megabits per second on AT&T between Jan. 28 and Feb. 26, according to Opensignal data,” Fingas reports. “That ranks against 29.4 megabits on T-Mobile LTE, and 29.9 megabits through Verizon LTE. Sprint speeds were a distant fourth at 20.4 megabits.”

Fingas reports, “The carrier’s ‘5G E’ labeling — present in the iOS 12.2 beta — has drawn widespread criticism, including even a Sprint lawsuit accusing it of false marketing.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: AT&T obviously believes their current and potential customers are stupid which seems like stupid marketing to us.

Sprint blasts AT&T for peddling ‘fake 5G’ in full-page NYT ad – March 12, 2019
Sprint sues AT&T for peddling fake 5G label on a 4G service – February 8, 2019
Some AT&T iPhones displaying misleading ‘5G E’ icon in iOS 12.2 beta – February 4, 2019
AT&T says it will have nationwide 5G by early 2020 – January 9, 2019


  1. It’s not faster because it’s not 5G.

    Originally the ITU designated 4G as having a peak throughput to any one device of a minimum of one gigabit per second.

    When carriers moved to LTE it did not meet that criterion. So the carriers complained an the ITU softened the definition of 4G to something less than one gigabit per second peak rate. Eventually LTE went to LTE-A (LTE-Advanced) which met the original ITU definition of 4G.

    AT&T is now pushing its LTE-A variant as “5Ge” or “5G E” when it just barely meets the full, original definition of 4G.

    There are lawsuits against AT7T for this false and deceptive marketing. I hope they cause AT&T to back away from this false marketing.

  2. I’m not going to defend AT&T here, I’ve been a customer of theirs for 12 years since original iPhone and have grown through all of the network pains, including that EDGE crash the week after iPhone came out in July 2007. But these surveys always seem a little suspect to me and always seem to come out to attack a specific provider for a different reason. For example, in my area, when that “5Ge” icon pops up, my Xs averages ~ 180 mbps down & ~ 90 mbps up, on LTE it’s ~105 & ~ 60; so there is a noticeable improvement. Even my older iPhone X gets around similar performance. In my area, also, Verzion isn’t nearly as solid with my dad’s iPhone (on their network) averages ~40 mbps down & ~ 35mbps up. So I think it’s all dependent on where they survey, what they count, and what they’re actually telling the readers.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.