Cablevision Systems launches legal proceedings against Verizon over false advertising

30 Jan 2015


Cablevision Systems Corp yesterday launched legal proceedings against Verizon Communications Inc, accusing it of falsely advertising to consumers on television, radio and the internet that its WiFi service was the fastest available, Reuters reported.

In the complaint, filed with the US District Court in Central Islip, New York, Verizon has been accused of basing its "fastest WiFi available" claim on new network routers it had been installing for up to $199.99, in spite of being fully aware that Cablevision offered the same routers for its Optimum network, free of charge.

The company also termed the advertising an effort to thwart the launch of its low-cost "Freewheel" phone that could take away sales from Verizon and other cellular service providers.

Rejecting Cablevision's allegations, Verizon said in a statement: "This is a boldface ploy to promote Cablevision's latest wireless gambit. A third party has tested and validated the FiOS Quantum Gateway router. It offers the fastest in-home Wi-Fi available from any provider."

Cablevision had sued Verizon in 2011 for consumers in an advertising campaign about the speed of Cablevision's Internet services. The companies, however, had later settled their dispute.

RTT News reported that Cablevision issued a statement related to the lawsuit saying, "Verizon's claim that it has faster WiFi than Cablevision is false, deceptive and designed to mislead consumers. Verizon has no public WiFi network.

"In addition, Verizon's in-home routers are not faster than Optimum Smart Routers and cost Verizon customers hundreds of dollars while Optimum's are free. It is not a coincidence that Verizon is making false WiFi claims just as Cablevision is introducing its all-WiFi Freewheel phone, which will allow consumers to avoid Verizon's data caps and excessive data overage fees."

"This is yet another in a long line of Verizon advertising falsehoods designed to fool the public and we are calling on the court to stop Verizon. Cablevision is taking this legal action so that consumers will no longer be misled and can make informed decisions based on the facts, "said Cablevision.

While Verizon did not have a public WiFi hotspot network, Cablevision said its Optimum WiFi network was the largest WiFi network in the US with 1.1 million tri-state area access points.

Meanwhile, Cablevision is pushing plans to launch Freewheel, a low-cost all-WiFi phone service providing unlimited data, talk and text. Freewheel, powered by the Optimum WiFi network gave consumers access to unlimited data without the high costs imposed by cellular companies


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