AT&T has insisted on labeling its upgraded LTE network as “5G Evolution” despite criticism (including from Engadget parent company Verizon), but it’s changing its tune now that it’s facing greater industry pressure. The carrier told Engadget that it “will comply” with a recommendation to discontinue the 5G Evolution branding from the National Advertising Review Board, a BBB-run body that serves as an ad industry self-regulator. NARB rejected an AT&T appeal against a determination that the 5GE badge and a “5G Evolution, the First Step to 5G” slogan were misleading customers.
While no one disputed that 5GE wasn’t real 5G, the board found that “Evolution” likely wasn’t enough to tell people the truth. The term might even suggest that AT&T’s network had evolved into 5G, NARB said. The “first step” message, meanwhile, might have given some the false impression this was early 5G technology.