Verizon thought they were so clever. Big Red’s recent “There’s a map for that” adverts seem to have ruffled some feathers over at AT&T. Now AT&T has
filed a federal lawsuit against Verizon
for false advertising. The issue comes down to the maps shown in the commercial.
The ad compares 3G coverage areas for the two wireless providers side by side. The red Verizon map, of course, looks much more filled in. AT&T’s map looks sparse by comparison. What many less savvy consumers might not follow is that this is only showing AT&T’s 3G, not EDGE. While Verizon’s entire network is 3G, AT&T still has significant areas covered only by slower EDGE service. AT&T claims that the ad leads people to believe that AT&T does not have coverage at all in the un-highlighted areas.
Indeed, the original version of the ad said that AT&T users outside the highlighted area were “out of touch”. Verizon removed that line and noted that non-3G voice and data were available, but AT&T still wasn’t happy. It’s not really an enviable position for AT&T to be in. They have to argue that Verizon should be making it clear that the AT&T network is available in more places – it’s just very, very slow. Everyone settle in, this might be entertaining.