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Verizon Asks Court To Affirm 'Most Reliable' Claim

samzenpus posted more than 5 years ago | from the can-you-sue-me-now dept.

The Courts 111

suraj.sun writes "Verizon has asked a court to affirm its claim to be 'America's Most Reliable 3G Network.' From the article, 'Verizon Wireless, a joint venture of Verizon and Vodafone Group PLC, asked a US court for a judgment that its advertising claims to be "America's Most Reliable 3G Network" were truthful, which rival AT&T called "misleading" on Monday. In papers filed in US District Court in Manhattan, Verizon said assertions on July 1 by AT&T Mobility LLC, a unit of AT&T, that its advertising was false could not be supported. AT&T, which has its principal business in Atlanta, had filed the challenge with the National Advertising Division of the Council for Better Business Bureaus. Verizon Wireless said its claims of having "America's Most Reliable 3G Network" and "America's Best 3G Network" and "America's Most Reliable Wireless Network" are "truthful, accurate and substantiated" and do not violate the trademark law known as the Lanham Act. It said that AT&T's challenge "relies on the incorrect premise that speed is an essential element of the standard for measuring network reliability.'" I can only hope that at some future date a court will decide which light beer truly is the best tasting.

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Atleast for me.... (2, Interesting)

SchizoStatic (1413201) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869155)

In the twin cities of Minnesota it is the best network. So at least for me in a non scientific study of using friends cell phones. My verizon blackberry is on a better network. Speed/Signal/Non Roaming.

Re:Atleast for me.... (2, Informative)

Tycho (11893) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869509)

Yeah, but where my parents live, which is in an inner ring suburb of Minneapolis, with Verizon, I can expect one bar intermittently, at best, on the top floor and no reception at all at either the ground level or outside in the yard. As one might expect, there is no reception as well in the partially underground basement. Granted, the signal is better than Sprint or T-mobile, which have no signal, but that's not saying much. I suppose there is the Verizon picocell basestation, but why should anyone have to pay any more than a trivial fee to deal with a poor signal, especially in a suburban area that, Verizon does not want seem to want to fix on its own.

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

megamerican (1073936) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870113)

You must be talking about Columbia Heights.

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

rootofevil (188401) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870783)

i never understood how they get away with the pricing on picocell devices - you are essentially doing them a favor by a) providing bandwidth for calls b) still using your minutes to do so c) paying money up front, and in some cases d) paying a monthly fee.

these devices keep you off carrier towers, and effectively reduce their overhead.

if anything these should be free.

Re:Atleast for me.... (2, Interesting)

ground.zero.612 (1563557) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869593)

Seconded. I should qualify that with some measurements that I used to determine it to be "best."

1) Call clearity.
2) Low call drop, drop-out rates.
3) Phone selection.
4) Coverage area.
5) Price.
6) Customer Service.

I find that typically if 1-5 are up to par I almost never have to deal with 6. Also, I have subscribed to Sprint (and Qwest back they were leasing from Sprint). I would place Sprint at #2 in the Minneapolis, MN area for at least 1-3 in the above. I experience the worst quality calls, and high call-drop rates with 100% of my iPhone using friends, but I don't have enough data to determine if that's because the iPhone is a junk phone or on a junk network, or a bit of both.

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870101)

In most of the places I've been, with the two carriers I've had experience with, if you are...

(a) out in the coutnry, you want Verizon
(b) in a fairly croweded city area, you want Sprint.

So, which is the most reliable? It's up to you.

Reliability to me is based on dropped/not-dropped calls, and quality of signal (noticeable fraction of words dropped = unreliable)

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

Sporkinum (655143) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870249)

In my experience, that was not true. I have a cell phone through work. It was US Cellular, but they got a good deal with Verizon and started switching everyone. I had to go back to US Cellular because there was no coverage in my little town 5 miles outside the urban area.
They are qualifying that statement by saying 3G network though. So if you want to dick around on your phone and not use it as a phone, it probably works fine for that.

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

Skater (41976) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871951)

This is an interesting issue for me right now, since my fiance uses AT&T, and I use Verizon, and at some point next spring (when our current contracts expire), we're going to pick one or the other. I've never had anything but Verizon and have been pretty happy with their coverage, even when I'm out camping. But since we've been together, on the two or three occasions I couldn't get a Verizon signal, she has been able to get a good AT&T signal. Sooner or later, I'm sure we'll run into a situation where I have signal and she doesn't, but it hasn't happened yet, and I expected Verizon to be better than AT&T. It's kind of fun to be doing a test like this, and it's sort of a unique opportunity.

Obviously this is a limited-scope test with all kinds of variables not taken into account. And so far we feel that the difference in coverages that we have seen aren't really enough to be an overriding factor in our decision - maybe a contributory factor, but not overriding.

Really, I just want to be able to tether cheaply...

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

ameyer17 (935373) | more than 5 years ago | (#28872995)

on the two or three occasions I couldn't get a Verizon signal, she has been able to get a good AT&T signal.

Anecdote time...
On Amtrak trains between Chicago and Carbondale, IL, Verizon seems to work almost the entire time, whereas all the other carriers have significant coverage dropouts.
On the other hand, I have issues with my cell phone in my home.

Re:Atleast for me.... (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870353)

At work, my Verizon phones are/were pretty much the only one that worked indoors.

Speed only counts... (1)

roger_that (24034) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869163)

in the Best catagory, not the most reliable catagory. So, they may win a partial victory here, but shouldn't get all of the catagories approved.

Re:Speed only counts... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28870711)

USPS... World's most reliable Wireless Network! Truly! Speed doesn't matter and there are no wires!

A decision I would support... (1)

dan_sdot (721837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869177)

A decision I would support would be if the court fully backed Verizon's claim...
BUT
made them get rid of the obnoxious guy with the thick rimmed glasses. I swear I have to change the channel when I see those ads.

Re:A decision I would support... (3, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870083)

Didn't you notice that they wanted speed excluded? You can get a "reliable" pretty much anywhere if you drop the speed requirement low enough. Being able to depend upon a reliable amount of bandwidth is definitely a part of reliability.

AT&T around here isn't going to be winning any reliability contests, but they seem to have a point in this case.

Re:A decision I would support... (3, Insightful)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870405)

Being able to depend upon a reliable amount of bandwidth is definitely a part of reliability.

That depends on how you define "reliable." When you talk about a "reliable old car" you're not saying "I can go 60mph in this thing any time I want." When you talk about a "reliable old computer" you probably aren't referring to speed. When you talk about hardwired phone lines being "reliable" you aren't talking about voice quality, you're talking about it always being available even during power outages. When you talk about a "reliable" network... speed isn't necessarily the issue. Whether or not it is usable is the issue... obviously, 0kb/s isn't very usable, either, but 5kb/s is. Maybe not to watch movies, I suppose.

Re:A decision I would support... (1)

twiddlingbits (707452) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870663)

How can the court decide when it's clear there are no objective measureable standards for "best" and "most reliable"? If there was a standard all one has to do is check the data submitted by each side versus the standard. In the Auto Industry they have the JD Powers surveys that one could refer to, others seem to trust Consumer Reports. The only thing this is doing is running up legal fees for both companies and affecting profits. On a personal note my work Crackberry is Verizon and my personal iPhone is AT&T and I've not noticed any significant differences in the "reliability" or speed. "Speed" is so nebulous, you could have a bazillion bits/sec connectivity and a dog slow web site, or be in a congested cell area where your speed is throttled. A whole lot to do about nothing, just gives the companies something to complain about rather than improving services.

Re:A decision I would support... (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873379)

How can the court decide when it's clear there are no objective measureable standards for "best" and "most reliable"?

I agree.

Re:A decision I would support... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28870661)

Reliable is an imprecise word. It depends entirely upon what you rely on the network to do. If you rely on the network to browse the web, then speed certainly does matter. If you're a doctor that relies on the network to be constantly contactable should one of his patients require surgery, speed really isn't important so long as there is enough to maintain a voice connection.

The best ruling might be for the judge to require Verizon to say "voice network" if they want to use the reliable wording. In my experience, there's no question that Verizon's voice network is beyond that of any other carrier. A few years ago I took a trip to Canyonlands national park. According to our guide, it's the most remote part of the continental US. Yet you can get a Verizon signal almost anywhere in the park. So reliably, I was told, that the US park system scrapped an expensive radio system they developed for the park in favor of Verizon cell phones.

That's coverage, not reliability. (1)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 5 years ago | (#28872763)

A few years ago I took a trip to Canyonlands national park. According to our guide, it's the most remote part of the continental US. Yet you can get a Verizon signal almost anywhere in the park. So reliably, I was told, that the US park system scrapped an expensive radio system they developed for the park in favor of Verizon cell phones.

But that's a measure of coverage, not reliability. Reliability would involve things like not losing a call or being unable to initiate one in a place that is covered.

I, on the other hand, have a house in a valley near the NV/CA border. It's on AT&T's "last cell" on the edge of their coverage for GSM - and I get all bars and solid service. But Verizon's "last cell" is on the other side of the hill. Despite having three villages and hundreds of houses and the intersection of two main numbered highways, AT&T covers it and Verizon does not. (And on the other side of the hill, at the lake resort village and casino, it's the other way around.)

AT&T has better coverage where I am. Verizon has better coverage on the lake village. Nothing to do with reliability.

Now I've NEVER had AT&T drop a call, or fail to initiate one, at that location. That's a measure of reliability (though a small sample). Here in Silicon Valley I have failed handoffs, failed call initiation, dropped calls, and one-direction-garbled calls rather often. THAT's also measure of (poorer) reliability (though again a small sample). It's also an indication that they need to split the cells in this area because the current arrangement is oversubscribed (except for the half-bad calls which are some other problem).

TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (3, Funny)

Mr. Beatdown (1221940) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869191)

I'm more interested in which is least filling.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

dan_sdot (721837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869289)

I love Budweiser's current ad campaign. They are just going with honesty: "Drinkability". Hey, it's drinkable!

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

a whoabot (706122) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869437)

Budweiser: The beer of driving.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870573)

Judging from litter, around here is is probably Busch Light, or maybe Coors Light.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

twiddlingbits (707452) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870723)

Try telling that to someone outside the USA. Many of them think it's piss poor beer. Just wait, when InBev gets finished with ruining the brand by cost cutting no one will care.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871229)

Thats because it is piss poor beer, even by American (I fall in that group) standards. The only time I consider it somewhat acceptable to drink Bud light or Miller Lite or similar is when:

A) i'm given the beer for free
B) i'm playing beer pong
C) i'm feeling sensitive about my weight, or i just ate at a buffet or something (yes they are mutually exclusive :P)

I still ritually begin each night at a bar with a Guinness or Smithwick's or something with taste because they're worth paying a few extra bucks for over the light ones, but I think most people just go with it simply because it is a couple or few bucks cheaper than a good beer.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

dan_sdot (721837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871699)

Try telling that to someone outside the USA. Many of them think it's piss poor beer.

....That's my point. If the best they can do is say that it is "drinkable", then they are in bad shape.
And as far as people's taste in beer outside the US goes, it is not generally better (except for beer capitals like Germany, Belgium, England, Ireland, etc).
In fact it used to crack me up when I lived in Italy how many euro-yuppies would pay 4-5 euros for a bottle of Bud (yes, American Bud). It was like Corona is here in the USA: the overpriced favorite of those who have no taste in beer.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

twiddlingbits (707452) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871901)

Agreed. I don't drink it. I live where I can get some good regional beers which I greatly prefer and willingly pay for $$ to consume. Plus it keeps the little guys around, I don't want to see a Wal-Mart of beer.

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (1)

hibiki_r (649814) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871007)

They turn their biggest weakness into a strength: The ad affirms that having no body is a good quality in beer!

Re:TFS: Which light beer truly is the best tasting (2, Funny)

Leafheart (1120885) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870665)

Bruce: We Bruces do this because we think American beer is like making love in a canoe?
Bruce: Making love in a canoe?
Bruce: yes, it is fucking close to water.

It's called puffery (4, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869195)

Definition: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puffery [wikipedia.org]
Example: http://www.theonion.com/content/node/31864 [theonion.com]

Re:It's called puffery (3, Insightful)

Pinckney (1098477) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869973)

But isn't reliability an objective quantity? Percent downtime, for example, would be an obvious way to measure reliability. From the same wikipedia page you linked to, both cheapness and safety are listed as objective rather than subjective claims and therefor not puffery; this would seem to be the same.

Re:It's called puffery (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870127)

I agree with you on that, you might not be able to get an absolute perfect measure of reliability, but you can measure things like dropped calls, average through put, distance between towers and repair records, sure it's not perfect, but if you're doing those things better than the competition, I think that's a pretty reasonable way of demonstrating superior reliability.

Re:It's called puffery (1)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870699)

But isn't reliability an objective quantity?

My guess is you're right. They'll get away with "best", but "most reliable" will probably require them to back it up.

Re:It's called puffery (1)

NotBornYesterday (1093817) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874345)

"Best" will depend on how it is defined. You and I (and AT&T)might include speed in our assessment. Verizon might insist that reliable == best, because speed doesn't matter if you can't connect.

Of course, we all know it is nothing but marketing crap designed to seep into the minds of vapid TV viewers as they eyeball their televisions in a semi-comatose state between doses of "Ghost Whisperer" and "Survivor XXI: Lost in an Antarctic Crevasse".

Instead of taking the court's valuable time with this marketing-driven pissing contest, I propose a more practical solution: Lock the marketing and legal departments of AT&T and Verizon in a vacant warehouse, arm them with machetes and force them to duel to the death. May God protect the side who is telling the truth ...

Re:It's called puffery (1)

gknoy (899301) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871417)

Is it reliable as in "Least Downtime", or as in "You can rely on us having a network for you no matter where you go"? (The proper term there would likely not be "reliable" but rather "extensive", I guess?)

Re:It's called puffery (1)

kaputtfurleben (818568) | more than 5 years ago | (#28872263)

The factors that go into determining reliability are objective, but the way you piece them together is not, I don't think.

For example, you would want to consider up-time on a regional basis, but you would also want to consider up-time on a worldwide basis. How do you objectively weight these two measurements, especially when they might vary on a wide basis? Perhaps town A has 10% up-time, but it's the only town with that problem. Perhaps that leaves Verizon with a %99.999999999 world-wide up-time. But, they didn't specify where that up-time existed, just that they have 'the most reliable' network. Well, their statement wouldn't be true in town A. Thus, they can't really say that in the way they want to.

Additionally, how do you prove that your measurements are accurate? You would need a third party to do the assessment, hired by someone other than Verizon. Yeah, I'm sure that's going to happen.

Re:It's called puffery (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28872817)

you need to go to law school or somethin

Re:It's called puffery (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28872839)

Reliability is a value that can be calculated quantitatively. There are clearly defined, industry accepted means by which Verizon could prove this statement. This is probably where their argument lies. AT&T need simply use the same technique to either prove or disprove the Verizon assertion that their network is the most reliable.

Reliability is define as the probability that a system operates within its specified operational parameters under stated conditions for a stated period of time. Percent downtime is actually a measure of availability and not reliability since you're looking at the probability that the system functions at any instant in time (including failures and repairs).

I'm not even a huge fan of 3G anymore (3, Informative)

bbhorrigan (1593919) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869203)

It does not even seem noticeably faster from EDGE, and for tethering it is just barely faster then EDGE or 1XEV. All I've found 3G good for is killing my battery.

Re:I'm not even a huge fan of 3G anymore (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869965)

3G really has turned out to be disappointing, hasn't it? I know some people back East that make great use of the 3G network, but in my travels throughout the lower 48, I have not seen an improvement over EDGE. I'm not familiar with 1XEV, so I'm going to have to gazoogle it to see what's what.

Re:I'm not even a huge fan of 3G anymore (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870013)

Agree. We need to add some more Gs in there, so I can download music quickly and play it in my speakers that go all the way up to 11.

Re:I'm not even a huge fan of 3G anymore (2, Informative)

Evan Charlton (1498823) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870609)

One of the huge benefits of 3G is that you can have a data connection while on a voice call. This isn't possible with EDGE. This also means that it's possible for a data connection to prevent a voice call from being received, if it does not yield the radio for an extended period of time.

Re:I'm not even a huge fan of 3G anymore (1)

Achromatic1978 (916097) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870681)

Really? In Olympia, WA, I can connect my N95 3G on AT&T to my laptop via USB or BT, go to speedtest and get around 700kbps+ down, 150kbps+ up. Definitely faster than EDGE for me, hell when I visit my mother-in-law's house I use it rather than her Wifi on 256kbps DSL.

Light beer (3, Informative)

Stele (9443) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869237)

I can only hope that at some future date a court will decide which light beer truly is the best tasting.

It's quite possible that none of them are the best tasting. You need flavor to actually have taste, don't you?

</off-topic>

Re:Light beer (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869883)

It's quite possible that none of them are the best tasting. You need flavor to actually have taste, don't you?

But they do have flavor. Several different kinds as I recall. You've got horse piss, skunk, moldy bread and vaginal yeast infection..... and those are just the offerings from Budweiser ;)

Re:Light beer (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873591)

horse piss, skunk, moldy bread and vaginal yeast infection

I'm suddenly tempted to start a beer company with precisely these flavors, if it doesn't exist already.

Re:Light beer (4, Insightful)

Foolicious (895952) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870603)

Don't ever *EVER* call beer off-topic, alright?

AT&T should focus (5, Informative)

wardk (3037) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869255)

on fixing their

1. inadequate network
2. price gouging
3. treating iPhone users differently than other customers (see 2)
4. crappy support (see 1)

I have an iPhone, an original, I love it. but I am SERIOUSLY considering an alternative as I am just flat out disgusted with AT&T and APPLE for their behavior.
FWIW, our home has 4 Macs, and no PCs.

the iPhone needs to be opened up to other carriers, plain and simple.

in my humble opinion, AT&T/Apple isn't a whole lot different than a mob operation and should be broken up with extreme predjudice.

the bigger question I have is why does the Fed allow phone carriers to consistently scam their citizens?

Re:AT&T should focus (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869811)

the bigger question I have is why does the Fed allow phone carriers to consistently scam their citizens?

Because Mr. Bernanke too busy trying to keep the financial system from melting down to worry about cell phones? ;)

Re:AT&T should focus (2, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870043)

A more interesting question for me is "do we really want federal courts to get in the business of establishing the truth of advertising claims? Don't we have the Consumers Union for such things?

If this becomes commonplace, it could get crazy. For example, if 5 or more judges on the Supreme Court were avid Apple users, it could change the landscape of technology in the US. It might be a way to establish gay rights, though.

OT - apple posts and karma (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28869915)

>>FWIW, our home has 4 Macs, and no PCs.

You may actually have those at home, but it looks like I should also say that in my posts to save my karma from Apple fanbois, in case I am saying even _slightly_ negative about Apple.

Re:AT&T should focus (2, Interesting)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870079)

It would be great if *someone* were focusing on creating a ubiquitous high-speed data network that provided open access to anyone using any hardware, so long as they were willing to pay a reasonable and flat monthly fee.

Is that really such a crazy idea?

Re:AT&T should focus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28873289)

Go to Russia you commie.

Re:AT&T should focus (1)

wardk (3037) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873761)

so two of the best 3.0 features don't even exist, multimedia text and TETHERING.

seems to me like a open and shut case of BAIT and SWITCH

I never ever thought I would think of Apple as scummier than microsoft. but I am coming around.

how is that google phone coming along?

Re:AT&T should focus (1)

guruevi (827432) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874101)

This is not just for Apple & AT&T but for any type of phone. Imho there should be no subsidized contracts. We should pay a low (flat-fee) price (~$10/mo) for phone & data and pay full price for unlocked, fully-functional cell phones. This would a) fix a lot of the waste problem used cell phones bring (every 12-18 months you wouldn't get a new one), b) force cell phone makers to make better (sturdier) phones - I'm looking at you Nokia, c) force cell phone makers to make better (more competent or at least uniform) interfaces and d) allow you to take your (optimal) cell phone from carrier to carrier as they compete in quality, service and cost for your contract.

I would love the Palm Pre but I utterly hate Sprint having switched last year because their reception sucks just about anywhere outside a large city. I would also like the iPhone but I'm not willing to pay AT&T the extra costs for unlimited data.

Seriously? (2, Insightful)

rm999 (775449) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869285)

"which rival AT&T called 'misleading'"

I certainly hope AT&T isn't claiming it is the most reliable 3G network, because that wouldn't just be misleading - it would be lying.

I can see their point though; in some areas of the country, I know Verizon is clearly not the most reliable network. Their claim is misleading, but I find it funny that of all companies AT&T decided to get into all this.

Re:Seriously? (2, Funny)

lorenlal (164133) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869379)

Well.. I have to admit that I'm impressed that Verizon isn't planning on backing down on this. In fact, they're essentially putting their lawyers where their mouth is... wait.. that didn't come out right.

Re:Seriously? (1)

Cstryon (793006) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869495)

They must be good lawyers. *Shiver*

Re:Seriously? (1)

tabrisnet (722816) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870677)

Good tasting lawyers?

Re:Seriously? (1)

Sandbags (964742) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873163)

Well, in my area, AT&T provides stonger signal and much higher reliability than verizon. My wife is a verizon user because her ENTIRE family is, and I'm on AT&T because I was a subscriber when the iPhone came out, and I have not yet found a reason not to have an iPhone, even with the price gouging, as the TCO is about $400 cheaper than a verizon blackberry for me over the 2 year term, once you include software, ringtones, blackberry data plan, replacement phone costs after 2 years (you only get $200 off a new blackberry after 2 years, you get $400 of a new iPhone after only 18months, GPS doesn't cost extra per month), etc.

Anyway, besides why I think iPhone is a good value; we can both be on the phone at the same time in the car. Whether I'm on 3G or edge, I'm always on 3-5 bars, and have exceptional call quality. She'll constantly be asking people to repeat themselves, or repeat herself. She constantly bitches about nthe quality, and laughs everytime a Verizon commercial comes on.

The ONLY time i've lost a call in the last 5 months was 1) driving underground though a tunel under a river that didn't have cell repeaters, and 2) when the person on the other end said they were driving through a bad area and THEY dropped the call, and appologized for their own poor reception when they called back several minutes later. That's right, 5 months, not a single dropped call excpet one noone could have maintined underground, and maybe I've dropped a handfull over the last 2 years. My Wife? She dropps a call almost every time we take a ride. Many places I get a signal she does not. She even drops calls in our own house, where she btw gets 3 bars and I have 5 bars on 3G.

She's gone through 4 phones in 2 years, 3 different models. ALL of them have horrible reception and stability in this area, and everywhere we seem to travel to (about 3 hours in any direction, on a regular basis). We're in the capitol city of our state, and you'd think we'd get decent service... nope, Verizon simply sucks. I was on Verizon prior to my now nearly 4 years on AT&T, and when i was on Verizon, their reliability was the reason i switched away from them. I was on Sprint for about 2 weeks and they were worse, been with AT&T since.

We were on vacation recently, and signals were weak at our location (and completely non-existant in the hotel). With WiFi, i was still able to make VoIP calls, and when outside, my 1-2 bars got me good call quality. She had no bars in or outside. Occasionally, she'd get a voicemail notice, or an SMS, but by the time she could react, she'd loose signal again. When we got back, we canceled her Verizon contract, paid the termination fee ($70), and I reactivated my iPhone 1G for her and put her on AT&T. She's actually willing to pay $30 more a month to not drop calls, and since Verizon now has "my 5" or whatever they call it, her family can all still call her AT&T line free (and we ported her existing number to AT&T, which took about 10 seconds, so all we had to do was send a text spam to all of them telling them to add her to their 5 list).

I don't know how they are nation wide, but in the southeast, Verizon sucks ass.

double standards... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28869291)

So its ok for AT&T to make false claims to get business, but its not ok for Verizon? Talk about childish. and as someone posted above me, 3g sucks the data speeds are not that great on any network. It's ALL marketing hype.

Re:double standards... (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870143)

So its ok for AT&T to make false claims to get business, but its not ok for Verizon?

The US economy has been built upon the god-given right of corporations to make false claims. We don't want to go messing with that now, or we'll all end up wearing mao jackets and having to ride bicycles everywhere, like in Europe. You know what comes after that, right? ...Socialism and soy-based diets. It's bad enough that the radical leftists Washington want to force health care on us. I don't know about you, but if wooden teeth and early death was good enough for our founding fathers, it ought to be good enough for us.

Re:double standards... (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874955)

So its ok for AT&T to make false claims to get business, but its not ok for Verizon?

The US economy has been built upon the god-given right of corporations to make false claims. We don't want to go messing with that now, or we'll all end up wearing mao jackets and having to ride bicycles everywhere, like in Europe. You know what comes after that, right? ...Socialism and soy-based diets.

HELLZ NO. The soy industry is owned by Monsanto, who are lying sacks of dung. If we're going to hold corps to making only true claims, we'll all be eating grassfed beef and free-range chicken!

Bias (2, Funny)

Alzheimers (467217) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869355)

Verizon just better hope that they don't get a judge who's actually used their service.

Talk about a hostile witness!

Re:Bias (1)

Zerth (26112) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870347)

Hey, Verizon isn't claiming to be reliable, just more reliable than the others.

It's like saying you're the cleanest hotel in town. The rooms may be dirty, but all the other hotels are caked in shit.

I think Verizon's plans suck, they overcharge, most of their phones are useless, and I can't wait until they drop CDMA in two years. But they're the only service that gets signal in the 1-stopsign villages I find myself driving through.

Re:Bias (1)

Ironica (124657) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874971)

It's like saying you're the cleanest hotel in town. The rooms may be dirty, but all the other hotels are caked in shit.

Wow, which town is that? I'd rather leave it out of my vacation plans (unless I'm going camping I guess).

This is a court case? (5, Funny)

oahazmatt (868057) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869357)

We're seriously wasting the court's time with this? Here's how I hope it plays out...

Verizon: We're the best.
AT&T: Nuh-uh!
Verizon: Yeah-huh!
AT&T: Nuh-uh!
Judge:: Damn it! Both of you shut up! The court finds both carriers are limited to using Edge! Verizon may only use the phrase "Home of the Crap Lobster" and AT&T can only use the phrase "That's what she said"!
T-Mobile: Good call, your honor. Catherine Zeta-Jones will be by tonight as promised.

Re:This is a court case? (1)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870171)

Verizon may only use the phrase "Home of the Crap Lobster"

I believe that Red Lobster has trademarked that one sometime in the late 80's.

Re:This is a court case? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28870847)

IANAL, but I was told by one that under the doctrine of "commercial puffery" a vendor can claim that his product is the best as long as there is not proof that it is worse.

ATT dropped my calls... Verizon has not... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28869459)

When I had ATT I would talk to my GF everytime I'd get home. We both had Cingular, which turned into ATT. When that happened, almost every day our calls would get dropped, either in the low-peak hours or in the high-peak hours (from 4pm to 7pm) and a lot of times after getting dropped we wouldn't be able to call each other. I live RIGHT next to an ATT cellphone tower, so wtf I couldn't connect is beyond me, but once our contracts ended we switched over to verizon.

We would talk the same amount and have NO dropped calls - no misconnections, etc.. ALSO, the sound was a lot clearer. With ATT we would hear static in the phone, not just my phone, but my sister's phone, and mom's phone, both of which are ATT, and different brands of phones (Motorola Razor and LG). Verizon doesn't have that.

The only I don't like about Verizon is the rollover minutes, which they do not do, but ATT does, which helps a lot. I have yet to go over my minutes and txting limit with verizon, but I've been close to that limit a few times.

For me, my experience with Verizon has been great.

Re:ATT dropped my calls... Verizon has not... (1)

King_TJ (85913) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870261)

Yeah.... my experience in the St. Louis, MO area is similar. I used Verizon for years, and then US Cellular for a couple years, before reluctantly switching to AT&T (only because I wanted to use the iPhone when it first came out).

If AT&T actually has the audacity to challenge Verizon's advertising claims, then I think someone needs to challenge AT&T on their "More bars in more places" ad campaign, and ridiculous promises of "The least dropped calls of any network"!

The only truth I found to the former ad was when hanging around parts of our south city area where there's lots of nightlife. Yep, more bars in more places SERVING ALCOHOL.... On my phone, not so much!

I had NO dropped calls I can remember on US Cellular, and that was using a Razr phone, which wasn't exactly notorious for its great abilities to keep calls connected or anything. As soon as I got the iPhone w/AT&T, dropped calls became a daily occurrence. I've upgraded to the 3G iPhone since then, and sure, the data network runs better - but just as many dropped call issues as before (so that kind of rules out an isolated defective iPhone incident).

I have other friends who switched from Sprint and T-Mobile to AT&T, and they ALL say the same basic thing.... More dropped calls and "no service" areas with AT&T than they ever had before.

Re:ATT dropped my calls... Verizon has not... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28870369)

I've had similar experiences on my switch from sprint to AT&T network. Sprint used to be great, then went downhill and then it came back up again with the latest internet service. Truthfully, I loved sprint but went to the ATT network cause my GF wasn't going to give up her Iphone. I got one, and seriously, I've had more dropped calls with ATT than I ever had with sprint.

Re:ATT dropped my calls... Verizon has not... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28870415)

  And other places it is the other way around. I use AT&T and never had issues. But friends that use other carries (Verizon, Sprint [worst!]) has issues. It really all depends on coverage in the area and how much money they wanna put into it.

Re:ATT dropped my calls... Verizon has not... (1)

kannibal_klown (531544) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870649)

I guess I'm pretty lucky with my AT&T then. In the last couple of years I've had maybe 1 dropped call and that was inside a concrete building. I get max bars (or close-to) at home. The only other times I had an issue were when I was in Vegas, and at a certain building in NY... I was getting a lot of static (and not just white noise) on the line and had to call back, but I'd imagine that was me being routed through a bad repeater or something.

Depending on which way I drive to work though, there is a very small dead zone (maybe 50 yards wide) which I noticed at a red light while picking up my phone off the floor. But since I don't use the thing while driving I don't care.

Is Verizon better? Probably. But AT&T isn't bad where I am.

Re:ATT dropped my calls... Verizon has not... (1)

thenextstevejobs (1586847) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875019)

When I had ATT I would talk to my GF everytime I'd get home.

(insert obligatory insults about /. readers (not) having girlfriends)

Canada? Rogers? (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28869763)

America's most reliable 3G network? Is it more reliable than Roger's 3G network in Canada?

Last time I checked, Canada was part of America which is a continent, not a country.

Re:Canada? Rogers? (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870329)

Check again. According to wikipedia [wikipedia.org] and other sources [princeton.edu] as well, "America" can be used to refer to the continent or the US of A. Whether or not it "should" is no as relevant as whether or not it does, in this case...

Re:Canada? Rogers? (1)

Achromatic1978 (916097) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871535)

Wait... according to a US university, '"America" can be used to refer to the continent or the US of A"?!? Gasp! Who'd have thought it? :)

Re:Canada? Rogers? (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873449)

Shocking, I know... ;) Google Canada returns the same princeton result. I couldn't find many Candian sources on Google. Maybe they don't have dictionaries up there, I dunno ;)

I'm "fairly" certain Verizon is primarily a United States based thing, right? And, in fact, I'm fairly certain that the billboards and ads are run in the US.

Most Canadians will correct you if you call them "American."

Re:Canada? Rogers? (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870595)

I'm pretty sure that if one goes by where the majority of the population lives, then yes Verizon is more reliable than Roger's. I don't think I could ever get a call through on the Roger's network where I live, but I have no problem with Verizon. As a matter of fact, the areas where I have received reliable Verizon service have a population that exceeds Roger's entire service area. This doesn't even count the large areas that I have never been to where there is Verizon service.

The ultimate logical outcome (1)

Drakkenmensch (1255800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28869821)

I can only hope that at some future date a court will decide which light beer truly is the best tasting.

Somehow, I always knew that the winning side of Bud Bowl would end up being decided in court...

And I can only hope... (1)

fredjh (1602699) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870017)

I can only hope that at some future date a court will decide which light beer truly is the best tasting.

I can only hope that, in the future, people will understand the difference between things that can be objectively measured and things that can only be subjectively measured.

Well, if they're "most reliable"... (1)

Robaato (958471) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870075)

Well, if Verizon is "most reliable"...

...then Fox News is "fair and balanced", and Wal*Mart has "Always the lowest price. Always", right?

Re:Well, if they're "most reliable"... (1)

bertoelcon (1557907) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870755)

Well, if Verizon is "most reliable"... ...then Fox News is "fair and balanced", and Wal*Mart has "Always the lowest price. Always", right?

Someone call $FAIRNEWS and a flea market, everyone should get a piece of the bs marketing pie.

Ha. (1)

FlyingSquidStudios (1031284) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870149)

This is the corporate/litigation equivalent of running to the teacher after being called a mean name by another kid.

Just a publicity stunt to get more businesses (2, Interesting)

OrangeMonkey11 (1553753) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870273)

Personally Verizon has pissed poor service when I had it and my calls were constantly dropped when i walked around. Granted the ATT service I have now isn't that much better and I cannot get 3G service due to both Nextel and Verizon having a monopoly hold on my town so they shutout any high speed cell service from ATT I can go two miles out of town and get 3G from ATT but now while I'm in town

screw wifi and beer (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870319)

i wanna know if charmin REALLY is the softest, and if castrol really protects against viscosity and thermal breakdown better than the leading brand!

er wait...is it the crapper wrapper that said stuff about viscosity and breakdowns?? i cant remember.

there is no referee, so all can be liars (1)

swschrad (312009) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870387)

only at some point, somebody has to be lying less than

click

bzzzzzzzzzzzz

Sprint? (1)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#28870767)

According to PC World, Sprint was more reliable. http://www.pcworld.com/article/167391/a_day_in_the_life_of_3g.html [pcworld.com]

Re:Sprint? (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875499)

Yeah, but Sprint is the Apple of cell phone providers.

AT&T is faster than Verizon? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28870865)

And the faster network leads to greater reliability?
Thanks for the tip, Verizon! That makes me even happier with my new iPhone!!

AT&T may have a point... (1)

Burning1 (204959) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871053)

AT&T may have a point if it comes to the reliability of available bandwidth.

If I have 5 nines uptime and I deliver 1mbps consistently, I am no more or less reliable than a provider that has 5 nines uptime and delivers 10mbps consistently.

However, if that other provider has 5 nines of uptime, and delivers somewhere between 1mbps and 10mbps at any given moment, I may have a strong claim to reliability than they do. IMO, consistency is part of reliability.

Let's throw in a ruling of 'Biggest Assholes'.... (3, Informative)

daoine_sidhe (619572) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871157)

Seriously, I don't care if the only other 'network' I have is a pair of goddamned tincans and some dental floss, I will never, under any circumstances, do business with any division of Verizon again after my experience with their Wireless division. I used to be a Unicel customer prior to Verizon purchasing them. I was a Verizon customer for about 1.5 days before their craptastic completely locked down phones and (at least in my area) truly sub-par voice quality just drove me crazy. Despite having the paperwork from both Unicel and Verizon saying that I had thirty days to cancel service, they jacked my bill from the ~$180 (three lines) to ~$650 due to 'early termination fees' and the like. When I complained they agreed to drop it to $380, never sent a new bill detailing the charges, and sent it directly to collections within a week. I'm still fighting with them over this, and I will never, ever allow myself to be suckered into anything with them again, I don't care if the service is free and comes with a solid gold ruby encrusted phone that grants wishes. Fuck Verizon and fuck their service. If Verizon was a person I wouldn't piss down their throat if their heart was on fire.

Let's waste more taxpayer money (1)

gubers33 (1302099) | more than 5 years ago | (#28871971)

Seriously, this is like an argument between two kids asking mommy who is right. Only difference being this is going to cost millions of dollars. Grow the $%^@^ up!

Admission (1)

Starcub (527362) | more than 5 years ago | (#28873689)

It said that AT&T's challenge "relies on the incorrect premise that speed is an essential element of the standard for measuring network reliability.'"

Isn't that tantamount to admitting that your network is slow?

They have no right to talk. (1)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874145)

Shouldn't AT&T at least build a wireless network of some kind before they try to claim it's more reliable. What's that AT&T? More bars in more places?! At least Verizon's claim seems to be true.

AT&T - Most Reliable - NOT!!! (1)

AetherBurner (670629) | more than 5 years ago | (#28874361)

Living in SE Wisconsin in a major metropolitan area, AT&T is not reliable at all for data, whether it is 3G or HSDPA. I would say that it is very poor.

If I want good, reliable data transfer, I have to go to a major shopping mall where, regardless of the connection being 3G or HSDPA, I get full signal strength. I live about four miles away from there and if I want to do any kind of use of the AT&T Notwork, I have to see if the 3G or HSDPA signal is stronger and offer my prayers to the propagation gods that the signal holds. I am lucky if the connection hold for five minutes before it chokes and that is on a golden day. Even at the office where I work, we had to put in a local repeater to get to the tower that is about a mile away so the coverage was reliable.

A couple of my offspring's friends have Verizon and I have done a side-by-side comparison, polling the same website, at the same time, and I found that the Verizon phone always had the complete page way before my phone did. Plus, the Verizon phone showed more signal (don't rag me on the bars issue - I prefer to measure signal strength in dBm using an IFR).

I hope that Verizon wins this one because in the eyes of this observer, they would win with me for what I have seen in a real live, unstaged comparison.

Best tasting Light Beer? (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875481)

Easy. A perfect pint [guinness.com] takes less than two minutes to pour!

Sprint ftw. (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 5 years ago | (#28875569)

Excellent speeds and reception. 9000+ bars all over major cities. Support is slow sometimes, and they need to make the billing portal easier to read so far as billing info goes, but the speeds are great. I get over 1 mbps within 1/4 mile of towers and never less than ~400 kbps everywhere else.
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