A panel of the National Advertising Review Board (NARB), the appeal advertising organization of BBB National Programs, concluded that T-Mobile’s express “fast,” “speedy,” and “reliable” claims for T-Mobile Home Internet (T-HINT ) are supported, but certain changes to the claims are recommended to help consumers understand the context in which they receive internet services and the type of performance they can expect from T-HINT.
T-HINT provides home Internet access over the same wireless networks that T-Mobile provides for its cellular service.
T-Mobile appealed NAD’s recommendations in (Case #7140) to discontinue or amend its “Fast” and “High Speed” claims and discontinue its “Reliable” claim for T-HINT. The advertisement in question was disputed by Comcast Cable Communications Management, LLC.
The NARB Panel concluded that T-Mobile has provided reasonable basis for its express claims of “Fast” and “High Speed” because T-Mobile uses the data to comply with its FCC-required product disclosures and A T-Mobile executive has confirmed that T-HINT will only be sold to customers who receive download speeds of at least 25 megabits per second and upload speeds of at least 3 Mbps. The panel also concluded that its explicit monadic “reliable” claim was supported by evidence in the record.
However, the NARB Panel concluded that the “high speed” or “fast” claims indicate that consumers will experience a speed performance similar to consumers’ experience of wired broadband services, which deliver a constant speed with little variability – a message that was not supported on mobile devices Home Internet technology results in significant speed fluctuations in network performance that differ from the speed performance of wired Internet.
In addition, the NARB Panel concluded that T-Mobile’s “reliable” claim implies a service reliability comparable to a wired home internet service, which requires more robust support than that provided by T-Mobile.
Therefore, the NARB Panel recommended T-Mobile:
Amend the “Fast,” “Fast,” and “Reliable” home Internet service claims to clearly disclose that T-HINT provides Internet access over a mobile wireless or cellular network and that T-HINT’s speeds may vary due to influencing factors vary mobile wireless or cellular networks; and amend its speed range disclosures to include the percentiles of T-HINT customers to which the stated speed ranges apply.
T-Mobile said it appreciates the NARB Panel’s “careful consideration and determination that T-Mobile has provided reasonable basis and reliable support for its express claims” that T-HINT is “rapid,” “speedy,” and “reliable.” ” may be. and that while T-Mobile does not believe that “these supported explicit monadic claims” require further disclosures to avoid implying consistent speed and reliability claims, T-Mobile supports the self-regulatory process and endorses NARB’s recommendation future advertising.”