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Verizon this week defended its commercials in court, calling AT&T's lawsuit against them ridiculous. It says that for AT&T "the truth hurts."  (Source: csmonitor.com)

The commercials seem to be working -- in recent months Verizon's image has soared, while AT&T's has sank, according to YouGov, which tracks brand reputation.  (Source: Apple Insider)
The nation's largest wireless provider fires back in court

AT&T and Verizon, the nation's second largest and largest telecoms, respectively, are at open war.  With Verizon's new Droid phone looking to challenge the iPhone as the reigning media smartphone, the pair wage battle in the court room over Verizon's commercials which depict AT&T's poor 3G coverage.

It has been reported that in some areas, such as New York City, that AT&T's call drop rates are as high as 30 percent -- or that it merely has no 3G service at all.  However, AT&T does have broad coverage under its older EDGE network, and it claims that Verizon's ads are deceptive.  AT&T's argument basically boils down to a claim that the average viewer is fooled to believe that the Verizon commercial's maps represent total coverage and not 3G coverage -- despite several textual and audio clues.  Thus it claims the commercials are misleading and damaging.

Initially AT&T only sued over Verizon's "There's a map for that" series, which introduced Verizon's rich red map and AT&T's lacking blue map to viewers, all while poking fun at Apple's iPhone slogan ("There's an app for that").  AT&T recently expanded the suit to include Verizon's new Christmas themed ads "The Island of Misfit Toys".

Verizon has flatly refused to stop airing the commercials, and to AT&T's dismay, the dispute seems unlikely to be resolved until well into the holiday season.  AT&T had hoped to quickly get Verizon's ads pulled from TV.

In court this week Verizon filed new documents, according to Engadget, which blast its competitor, saying that the lawsuit is a weak attempt from a player that just can't compete.  States Verizon's filing, "AT&T did not file this lawsuit because Verizon's "There's A Map For That" advertisements are untrue; AT&T sued because Verizon's ads are true and the truth hurts."

Continues the filing, "In the final analysis, AT&T seeks emergency relief because Verizon's side-by-side, apples-to-apples comparison of its own 3G coverage with AT&T's confirms what the marketplace has been saying for months: AT&T failed to invest adequately in the necessary infrastructure to expand its 3G coverage to support its growth in smartphone business and the usefulness of its service to smartphone users has suffered accordingly. AT&T may not like the message that the ads send, but this Court should reject its efforts to silence the messenger."

As it sees its hopes of a favorable court ruling in jeopardy, AT&T has tried to set the record straight among its own customers, writing them a letter asking them to ignore what it perceives as lies in Verizon's ads.  It writes that the Verizon commercials are "so blatantly false and misleading, that we want to set the record straight about AT&T's wireless data coverage".  In the letter, the company highlights what it sees as abundant mixed coverage on its older EDGE and new 3G networks.

Regardless of whether AT&T's dreams of silencing Verizon's commercials come true, evidence indicates that the damage has already been done.  In recent weeks Verizon's brand image has soared while AT&T's has sank, according to recent surveys market researchers at BrandIndex.  The surveys looked at whether customers would recommend the respective telecoms to their friends.  AT&T scored less than a -2 in the most recent study -- indicating not many customers would recommend getting an AT&T phone.



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RE: Droid
By sprockkets on 11/17/2009 5:49:51 PM , Rating: 2
Because Android 2.0 just came out and no other phones yet support it?

The original G1 most likely cannot upgrade to it, but the newer mytouch perhaps can, and so can the HTC Hero. No official word yet about who can upgrade.

Verizon didn't get Android 2.0; Motorola did.

Think about it for a moment from this angle: How can Google charge for Android when they allow you to download it for free, seeing as how everything on it save the proprietary Google apps is GPL licensed? You can even make your own custom ROMs, so long as you do not integrate those Google custom apps.

Remember, Google is not in it for selling hardware; they want as many as possible to run this OS because that means more ad revenue and more data harvesting from the Google Gmail account and such that you use on the phone. That's how Google works.

Why else would Google still pay Mozilla 50 million dollars a year to be the default search engine and home page while they have their own browser? More ad revenue!


RE: Droid
By skyward on 11/17/2009 8:33:59 PM , Rating: 2
You don’t understand how it works. HTC and Samsung don’t know Android 2.0 was available. Both HTC and Samsung think that the only cdma Android was Android 1.6 and that was too late to the game. That why they had to custom Android 1.5 to work with cdma. They have no idea Android 2.0 ready to go. They only talk about Android 2.0 after the Droid. From the people I know in the wireless business, Google told them that Android 2.0 is not ready and that it was still being built. That was only one month before we know Motorola Droid have Android 2.0. Mostly Motorola pay Google for being first and Motorola show it to Verizon. And you know what happen. And the fact is Google knows Verizon will get the Android 2.0 because they will have to work with Verizon to make it network ready. Verizon will pay for Android 2.0 because they don’t want it to happen again like the IPhone or Pre. Like you said Google is in it for the money. If they can sale the rights to be first, they can and will.


RE: Droid
By sprockkets on 11/17/2009 10:24:16 PM , Rating: 2
That makes sense, but is this then just the exception to the rule?


"The whole principle [of censorship] is wrong. It's like demanding that grown men live on skim milk because the baby can't have steak." -- Robert Heinlein














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