Author Topic: ATT Launches "fake" 5G Network  (Read 2813 times)

spuwho

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ATT Launches "fake" 5G Network
« on: April 25, 2017, 11:43:27 PM »
Seems ATT lost the bidding on spectrum to Verizon to launch a "real" 5G network, so what do you do? You create a fake service.

Per Gizmodo:

http://gizmodo.com/at-t-launches-fake-5g-network-in-desperate-attempt-to-s-1794645881

Have you heard? AT&T is going to “pave the way for the next generation of faster speeds” with something called 5G Evolution. No, it’s not actually a new 5G network, the much hyped successor to 4G that’s supposed to change the way we connect to the internet. It’s just a re-branded 4G offering, and AT&T’s sad attempt at seeming innovative.

If you already feel confused, don’t worry. AT&T probably isn’t offering 5G Evolution for your phone or in your area. The rollout is starting in certain parts of Austin, Texas and will only work with Samsung Galaxy S8 devices. AT&T promises to offer the new service in 20 metro areas by the end of the year. The company also promises that that 5G Evolution will offer speeds “up to twice as fast” as 4G LTE connections on its network. However, there is a warning below this claim that says the press release contains “forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially.”

Weirdly, AT&T announced this very limited rollout of its new fake 5G service just a couple hours before news reports revealed that Verizon had outbid AT&T on a major chunk of 5G spectrum. (That’s for a real 5G network.) Who knows if the two announcements are related. There’s a good chance that they’re not, since AT&T first announced 5G Evolution back in January. But it makes you wonder: what exactly is AT&T trying to do with this new suspiciously named service?

The answer is pretty damn simple: AT&T is using good old fashioned marketing tricks to dupe customers. The company isn’t offering 5G service before everyone else, but plenty of people might believe that it is. Real 5G service is more than a marketing ploy, though. As Gizmodo’s own Michael Nunez explained early last year, 5G networks depend on an entirely different type of technology than 4G or 4G LTE. That’s part of the reason why it’s been so painfully difficult for telecom companies to set up new 5G networks.

AT&T’s new 5G Evolution service is also, notably, not the same thing as LTE-U, an ultrafast network technology that works on the same spectrum as wi-fi and Bluetooth. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) gave LTE-U the green light back in March, and T-Mobile says it will start operating LTE-U networks this year. So it’s hardly a surprise that AT&T would want to launch its own fancy new network as soon as possible. It just sucks that it sounds like bullshit.

If you’re an AT&T customer with a Samsung Galaxy S8 who happens to live in one of the same neighborhoods where AT&T will be offering 5G Evolution, congratulations. Your phone is probably going to get a little bit faster soon. If you’re literally anyone else in America, don’t worry. You’re not missing out on a new lightning fast 5G network. You are enjoying some very confusing marketing, though. Thanks AT&T.

peestandingup

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Re: ATT Launches "fake" 5G Network
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2017, 09:52:55 AM »
Sounds bad & they shouldn't be doing it, but unfortunately I don't believe the "4G, 5G, Supa Mega Sextuple Geeeees!" monikers are regulated in many ways so they get to call it what they want (maybe as long as it theoretically can reach a certain speed). T-Mobile did this with their "4G" launch, which wasn't true LTE but a beefed up HSPA+, while they got their LTE rolled out on the backend. It ended up being great, but was still shady marketing. This is probably the route ATT is taking.

Gizmodo has pretty crappy writers these days (they're sensationalist click baity pretending to be tech driven w social issues sprinkled in, same as Vox/The Verge). I figured they'd be gone by now since the Hulkster sued the bejesus out of their parent company, but then Univision snatched them up (which isn't great either).

remc86007

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Re: ATT Launches "fake" 5G Network
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2017, 03:47:07 PM »
These "standards" have always been funny to me. They have no practical meaning for consumers due to the numerous technical variations and the different frequency ranges used by each carrier. Apparently most tech marketing focus groups agree that the best way to sell tech to consumers is to put a number on it and increase it every few years.

Also humorous to me is download-speed focused advertising. 99% of smartphone users could not tell the difference in 25Mb/s down and 100Mb/s down, especially in web browsing. 25Mb/s down is plenty to stream 4k, not that anyone with a data cap would do that anyway. As far as downloading apps, most smartphone storage subsystems can't deal with saving data that quickly anyway. Those speeds are only achieved in ideal conditions anyway. Range and performance in less than ideal conditions are far more important to most smartphone users. I'd even rather see latency comparison tests than peak download speeds, at least that could be perceptible in using the phone.

spuwho

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Re: ATT Launches "fake" 5G Network
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2017, 07:19:24 PM »
These "standards" have always been funny to me. They have no practical meaning for consumers due to the numerous technical variations and the different frequency ranges used by each carrier. Apparently most tech marketing focus groups agree that the best way to sell tech to consumers is to put a number on it and increase it every few years.

Also humorous to me is download-speed focused advertising. 99% of smartphone users could not tell the difference in 25Mb/s down and 100Mb/s down, especially in web browsing. 25Mb/s down is plenty to stream 4k, not that anyone with a data cap would do that anyway. As far as downloading apps, most smartphone storage subsystems can't deal with saving data that quickly anyway. Those speeds are only achieved in ideal conditions anyway. Range and performance in less than ideal conditions are far more important to most smartphone users. I'd even rather see latency comparison tests than peak download speeds, at least that could be perceptible in using the phone.

The biggest limitation to high data speeds to phones is the battery. Run 100mbps to a phone and the battery will drain pronto.

These guys want to get wireless into residential. Especially ATT and Verizon, who desperately want to shed legacy copper asap. The 700Mhz spectrum sale (former analog TV frequencies) went so fast because it can penetrate walls easily. Whereas the PCS channels 1900 Mhz do not.

They also dont like wifi. They want broadband to be like software, one user, one license to access.

Now with Trump removing net-neutrality rules, look for all sort of marketing gimmicks to get one to pay more for the same service.

"4K on ATT, we can do that for $10/mo. more!!"

remc86007

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Re: ATT Launches "fake" 5G Network
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2017, 10:58:31 PM »
They can take my physical home internet connection when they pull it from my cold, dead hands. Latency and reliability are far more important to me than bandwidth.