AT&T and Verizon Wireless have dropped their lawsuits against each other regarding the 3G coverage maps Verizon used in its ads and that AT&T called misleading. Verizon will continue to air the ads.
AT&T and Verizon appear to have agreed to disagree.
The rival mobile carriers have dropped the lawsuits they had filed against
each other, according to reporting from Reuters
and The Associated Press.
sources state that neither company is commenting on the matter, though Verizon
said it will continue to run its "There's a Map for That" ad
campaign, which was the subject of the suits.
AT&T filed its lawsuit against Verizon on Nov. 3, stating that the ads,
which feature the carriers' 3G coverage maps, were "misleading,"
despite being correct. The ads show Verizon's map smattered in red dots,
denoting its 3G coverage areas, while AT&T's map is far more sparsely
dotted with blue. AT&T
argued that consumers might be confused into thinking it offers no coverage at
in its non-3G areas, where
it offers EDGE (Enhanced Data for Global Evolution) coverage instead.
lawyers responded with a 53-page memorandum that essentially called the suit
"AT&T sued because Verizon's ads are true and the
truth hurts," they wrote in the document.
While the lawsuit was pending, AT&T additionally asked that Verizon be
made to stop airing the ads-a
request that was denied by an Atlanta judge on Nov. 19.
The judge's ruling
on the matter may have led to AT&T dropping the case, as according to The
New York Times, Judge Timothy Batten, speaking from the bench, told the court:
"I think that a person with a
skeptical bent of mind might call Verizon's ads sneaky, as I indicated earlier.
I think a more sanguine view is that they are simply clever. Either way,
however, they are literally true. And the Court holds that AT&T has failed
to carry its burden of showing that they are nevertheless misleading."
Ken Hyers, an analyst with Technology Business Research, agreed that
AT&T wasn't left with much to work with.
"The big problem here, for AT&T, is that the map was accurate. So
from that standpoint, it's a pretty hard to make a case that it was a
misrepresentation," Hyers told eWEEK.
"They can keep on finding ways to talk about who's got the fastest
network or best coverage," Hyers added. "But, while I think the ads
are painful for AT&T-particularly
because they were effective!
-their money and efforts are better spent in