The National Advertising Division (NAD) of BBB National Programs has recommended that Comcast stop making the advertising claim of Best In-Home Wi-Fi Experience" or at least narrow the claim to specific superiority attributes it can support.
That came in response to a challenge by AT&T to that and other advertising claims.
NAD also asked Comcast to pull its "Living with AT&T" commercial because the message that AT&T offered internet speeds it does not deliver.
Comcast said it would appeal the decision to the National Advertising Review Board because it argues that it provided "a more than reasonable basis to support its claim that it provides the 'best in-home Wi-Fi experience'" and that the decision is a “departure from the reasonable basis standard upon which Comcast and all other responsible advertisers rely.”
NAD did determine that Comcast's claim that “AT&T, why am I paying the same price for only a fraction of the speed you advertised?" as a stand-alone statement was supported, explaining it was because of Comcast's flat-price model versus AT&T's technology-based speed tiers.
"Comcast internet service is delivered over its cable network, with the same speeds available to nearly all customers in its service area. Whereas, AT&T provides its customers different speed tiers, based on which technology is available at their address (e.g., copper telephone wire, fiber optic cable, and a hybrid of copper and fiber optic cable)," NAD said. "At its base level of service, AT&T charges a flat price for 'up to 100 Mbps,' meaning that consumers will be sold different internet speeds depending on which speed is available at the consumer’s address. Comcast’s advertising sought to highlight that consumers who sign up for this service pay the same price but receive different internet speeds.
"Because of this flat price model, NAD determined that the challenged express claim in Comcast’s “Living with AT&T” commercial, 'AT&T, why am I paying the same price for only a fraction of the speed you advertised?,' was supported.
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.