New Bill Will Stop Carriers From Lying About The iPhone 4G

New Bill Will Stop Carriers From Lying About The iPhone 4G

Next month, AT&T will start rolling out its LTE network in the United States, prepping the ground for the launch of an LTE-equipped iPhone in 2012. Even though Ma Bell doesn’t actually have a 4G network in place right now, though, that’s not stopping them from selling 4G phones and bragging about their 4G speeds. New legislation working its way through the house wouldn’t stop that, but would make them append a caveat: their minimum data speeds.

Called The Next Generation Wireless Disclosure Act, the bill would force companies to tell customers buying a “4G” phone or signing up for “4G” service what their minimum data speeds will be, and the likelihood of network interference.

This couldn’t be more needed, because wireless companies are currently downright lying about 4G. The only companies that by any reasonable definition have 4G networks currently in place are Sprint (WiMax) and Verizon (LTE). AT&T and T-Mobile only have HSPA+, which is admittedly faster than standard HSPA, but still firmly 3G.

Even worse? AT&T’s 4G smartphones actually get slower network speeds than the iPhone 4, because they’ve capped them!

This is a good thing. When the first 4G iPhone comes along, it behooves us all for the definition of “4G” to be as clearly established as possible.

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  • prof_peabody

    I think I’d rather be the one on the left actually. 
    I don’t think that 4G girl is ever going to get a date. 

  • Tallest_Skil

    No one has 4G. 4G is defined as starting at 1 gigabit per second. Not even LTE-A, which NO ONE has implemented, hits that (it’s 600Mbps).

  • Sugarless_GiRL_10

    Do we really have bona fide 4G in the US? I remember the whole GPS thing…correct me if I’m wrong but I believe several major companies were trying to block 4G networks from being established. Was it just LightSquared’s, or all 4G? (Here ‘s what I mean: http://www.saveourgps.org/ )

  • TylerHoj

    I worked for AT&T before. In friggin training they said that they have a 4G network…this was when the iPhone 3G had just come out. 

  • Guest

    actually nobody has “4G”  even Verizon.  Its more 3.9G than 4G

  • nthnm

    I like the part about having to disclose what minimum speeds will be. I think ISPs should have to do this too. I hate signing up for service that offers “up to xMbps” speeds.

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his wife and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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