AT&T suing Verizon over 'There's a map for that' ads

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Let the ad wars continue.

AT&T sued Verizon Wireless, claiming Verizon's latest campaign targeting AT&T's 3G coverage is misleading. AT&T is seeking a cease and desist order through a federal court in Georgia, and said the ads are causing it to lose "incalculable market share."

Last month, Verizon began widely pushing an ad campaign, "There's a map for that," that was a swipe at Apple's "There's an app for that" spots touting the iPhone, which AT&T Mobility exclusively offers. AT&T claims the ads don't accurately represent AT&T's coverage. The ads show maps of the two companies' 3G wireless coverage, and AT&T claims that the blank spots on the map for AT&T in the ads mislead viewers into thinking that AT&T has no service in those areas.

"By communicating that AT&T customers have no coverage in large parts of the country, Verizon is misleading the public about an essential component of the services AT&T offers," the lawsuit said. AT&T argues in the lawsuit that customers can "fully use their wireless devices outside of a '3G' coverage area and undisputedly have coverage in areas depicted by white or blank spaces on the maps used in Verizon's advertisements."

A Verizon spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The "map" ads from Verizon are just a part of the No. 1 carrier's ad blitz. The company in recent weeks launched a related campaign for its Android-based Droid phone from Motorola that stabs directly at the capabilities of Apple's iPhone.

Interestingly, this is not the first time that the nation's top two carriers have tussled over advertisements. In July, Verizon asked a U.S. judge to determine whether its "America's Most Reliable 3G Network" ads are truthful, a claim AT&T said was misleading.

For more:
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)
- see this Reuters article

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