In response to Verizon’s “There’s a map for that” ad campaign, which riffed on the iPhones “There’s an app for that” campaign, iPhone mothership AT&T sued Verizon. The primary legal basis for AT&T’s claims was that the Verizon “There’s a map for that” map showed Verizon’s 3G coverage compared to AT&T’s 3G coverage in the same area – AT&T’s 3G coverage in those areas was much more limited (naturally, otherwise Verizon wouldn’t be using it in an ad campaign), and AT&T was complaining that they still have voice and data services in those areas (just not 3G) and so viewers could be mislead into thinking that AT&T didn’t have any coverage (not just 3G coverage) in the regions depicted.
The lawsuit, filed last month, included a request for a temporary restraining order (TRO) and a more permanent injuction, stopping Verizon from running those ads.
Not long after, the Court denied AT&T’s motion for both the TRO and the injunction, although it didn’t dismiss the case.
Now, however, AT&T has filed their own motion to withdraw the case. The motion, which was signed off on by Verizon, almost certainly means that AT&T has realized that the lawsuit was a poor idea, and they were unlikely to prevail.
Or perhaps it was simply a matter of recognition of mutually assured destruction (or distraction), as almost certainly relatedly, Verizon also withdrew a lawsuit that it had filed against AT&T during the summer. Verizon’s lawsuit had objected to statements made by AT&T about their 3G network.
The bottom line is that these two companies are suing each other over statements each is making in advertising about how great their 3G networks are.
The big question is, does the average cell customer even care about whether they have access to a 3G network, or do they just want their cell phone to work?