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Comcast Gets Wrist Slapped For Misleading Ads
Can't Claim It's Faster Than FiOS With Better HD Quality
by Karl Bode 12:35PM Friday Sep 02 2011 Tipped by tmpchaos See Profile
The National Advertising Division of the Better Business Bureau is effectively a self-regulatory agency that tries to settle disputes over misleading ads before handing them off to the FTC for action (or inaction as the case often is). The agency has been very busy of late cracking down on misleading advertising by both cable and phone companies suggesting that core fiber is the same as last mile fiber. This week the agency settled a dispute between Comcast and Verizon, issuing a statement urging Comcast modify or discontinue certain claims for its Xfinity service. Specifically, NAD and Verizon took issue with Comcast claims that Xfinity has the "best HD Picture quality," and offers the "fastest Internet available," even though in many markets the latter is true:
quote:
Click for full size
at most, that the overall HD picture quality of Comcast was at parity with Verizon FiOS and thus was not sufficient to support a claim Comcast picture quality was superior to Verizon FiOS (or to certain other competitors)...NAD determined that the advertiser did not support its “fastest Internet” claim (including in the qualified form “fastest Internet to more homes than anyone”) and recommended that the claim be discontinued. Finally, NAD noted that the advertiser voluntarily discontinued broadcast advertising that claimed Verizon does not offer 24/7 live customer service and recommended the advertiser discontinue the claim on its Website and in other advertising.
Usually by the time NAD issues a ruling the ads have already been run and in most cases discontinued, making these rulings more showmanship than substance -- and a tool primarily used by the industry to keep regulators from seriously cracking down on false advertising claims. Comcast did recently find themselves on the winning side of a NAD ruling, the organization declaring that Comcast was allowed to advertise their business-class service as fiber optic, since unlike their residential service, there actually is last-mile fiber.

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Bill Neilson
Premium
join:2009-07-08
Arlington, VA

I am sure Comcast is so embarrassed

by this punishment

Due to the severity, it is likely they will NEVER try and mislead the possible consumers.

Yup, this is how justice is done. With authority
hottboiinnc
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: I am sure Comcast is so embarrassed

why? You know the BBB has no say so in anything and if Comcast is a member of the BBB the issue will just go away.

the BBB is nothing but a modern day mafia for businesses to hide complaints
WhyMe420
Premium
join:2009-04-06
kudos:1

Re: I am sure Comcast is so embarrassed

said by hottboiinnc:

the BBB is nothing but a modern day mafia for businesses to hide complaints

Couldn't agree more.
damox
Premium
join:2002-01-07
Olympia, WA
I'm sure you said that, tongue-in_cheek!
--
DAMOX

C_Chipperson
Monster Rain
Premium
join:2009-01-17
00000
kudos:3

ooooook

anyone who doesn't know that hybrid fiber-coax is not the same as fiber to the home, probably wouldn't ever know, notice, or care. and surely anyone reading this news story here on dslreports knows the difference, and knows that both companies are far from consumer friendly.

Comcast saying it has the best HD picture? That is complete horseshit, in my area anyway. I can't stand the compression artifacts whenever I watch sports at friends houses who have comcast. It is just horrible.

tshirt
Premium,MVM
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 recommendation

Re: ooooook

"at most, that the overall HD picture quality of Comcast was at parity with Verizon FiOS and thus was not sufficient to support a claim Comcast picture quality was superior to Verizon FiOS (or to certain other competitors)..."
That statement implies that they are all approximately equal in quality.
You know these to be compression artifacts rather than wireless link in stadium, satellite feed, or signal/equipment problems at your friends home?
BlueC

join:2009-11-26
Minneapolis, MN
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Integra Telecom

Re: ooooook

I recall coming across direct comparisons of bitrates between DirecTV and Comcast on their SD and HD streams. From what I remember, Comcast had used more compression on certain channels.

Wouldn't surprise me if that's still the case.

I've personally seen both and will agree that Comcast appears to be lower quality. Not sure about Verizon, but I'd imagine (given their infrastructure) that they don't compress as much as Comcast. At the very least, they should be similar.
Skippy25

join:2000-09-13
Hazelwood, MO

Re: ooooook

I don't recall what website it was, but you could go there and see that Direct dynamically changed their bandwidth for certain shows and that. So just because HBO HD looked good with Saprano's does not mean it will look good for a replay of Happy Gilmour.

So even saying that channel X was served at X compression would be wrong.

C_Chipperson
Monster Rain
Premium
join:2009-01-17
00000
kudos:3

1 edit

1 recommendation

said by tshirt:

You know these to be compression artifacts rather than wireless link in stadium, satellite feed, or signal/equipment problems at your friends home?

Yes

I had Comcast for a couple years, when I switched to DirecTV I was blown away, seriously

and either my eyes are getting better or comcast hd in my area is getting worse

»www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthre···=1008271

the link is old, but the problem is the same. and i haven't seen fios as i live in colorado, but i have read that directv is approximately equivalent to fios for picture quality
BlueC

join:2009-11-26
Minneapolis, MN
kudos:1

Re: ooooook

That's exactly the link I was thinking of, thanks for posting it.

45612019

join:2004-02-05
New York, NY
Comcast continues to compress the feeds that they receive from the networks further. That thread is 3 years old but the problem continues. It's actually been exacerbated as they experiment with packing 4 channels per QAM.

Verizon continues to pass the feeds they receive from the networks through without adding additional compression... for now.
jjeffeory

join:2002-12-04
USA
No. Fios is much better than DirecTV/Dish or any other cable company that I have seen. around the country. This was true with Fios out West in California and on the East coast.
djoropallo

join:2003-10-20
Maple Shade, NJ

Re: ooooook

said by jjeffeory:

No. Fios is much better than DirecTV/Dish or any other cable company that I have seen. around the country. This was true with Fios out West in California and on the East coast.

I have had Comcast, then DirecTV then Dish and now FIOS and CC was the worst by far and FIOS is the best by far. We had it installed in March and I still tune in a channel and go "Wow!" at the clarity.

BHNtechXpert
BHN Staff
Premium,VIP
join:2006-02-16
Saint Petersburg, FL
kudos:148
said by tshirt:

"at most, that the overall HD picture quality of Comcast was at parity with Verizon FiOS and thus was not sufficient to support a claim Comcast picture quality was superior to Verizon FiOS (or to certain other competitors)..."
That statement implies that they are all approximately equal in quality.
You know these to be compression artifacts rather than wireless link in stadium, satellite feed, or signal/equipment problems at your friends home?

The average person wouldn't know compression artifacts from the results of a poorly designed hd television and I'm glad you pointed that out Isn't it funny how people get just a tidbit of jargon and all of sudden think of themselves as experts
--
~From time to time my posts may contain information derived from publicly available sources. If you ever have any question as to the source please feel free to ask and I will provide them to you.~
Wilsdom

join:2009-08-06

I wish FiOS was in my area to sue TWC

TWC's constant advertisement of its "advanced fiber optic network" is annoying.
hottboiinnc
ME

join:2003-10-15
Cleveland, OH

Re: I wish FiOS was in my area to sue TWC

it is advanced. It's not 100% copper as most of the telco's network. those ads do not say anything about where the fiber optic is or anything else. And this isn't about VZ suing it's about the BBB sticking their noise into something that they have no business in doing.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

put up or shut up!

entry level tier @ Cablevision just went to 20/2... Comcast? Time Warner, Charter? not so much...

FIOS 15/2 is more like 20/5 now with provisioning. Might as well call it what they set it at.. "fluff" is a meaningless term. If it's provisioned at 20/5(6), than just say it's that tier...

BTW, lying's gotten AT&T in a keep of a a mess with the DOJ, I doubt comcast wants to keep mucking about... this time it'll be the FTC getting involved..

45612019

join:2004-02-05
New York, NY

1 recommendation

Re: put up or shut up!

Not to mention the monthly BANDWIDTH CAPS on Comcast which effectively limits ALL THEIR SPEED TIERS to an average rate of just - get this - less than 1 Mbps!

You might be able to get a 50 Mbps connection on Comcast but a 20 Mbps FiOS connection from Verizon would still be able to transfer more data in one month than Comcast will allow you to transfer in an entire year.

It is a joke. It's as if Ferrari sold cars that could only drive one mile a month.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

Re: put up or shut up!

said by 45612019:

Not to mention the monthly BANDWIDTH CAPS on Comcast which effectively limits ALL THEIR SPEED TIERS to an average rate of just - get this - less than 1 Mbps!

You might be able to get a 50 Mbps connection on Comcast but a 20 Mbps FiOS connection from Verizon would still be able to transfer more data in one month than Comcast will allow you to transfer in an entire year.

It is a joke. It's as if Ferrari sold cars that could only drive one mile a month.

True.. and one day that might change, but until then-- the answer is 4 letters long... MOVE
dagg

join:2001-03-25
Galt, CA

Re: put up or shut up!

said by tmc8080 See ProfileTrue.. and one day that might change, but until then-- the answer is 4 letters long... MOVE

:um. not exactly the most practical of suggestions. for the vast majority of consumers, you only get whats available in your area due to the lack of any real competition... and there is NO fiber in my area.

which means the only 'move' option left is to physically relocate. which, lets be honest, is a pretty rediculous notion to begin with.
openbox9
Premium
join:2004-01-26
Germany
kudos:2
said by 45612019:

Not to mention the monthly BANDWIDTH CAPS on Comcast which effectively limits ALL THEIR SPEED TIERS to an average rate of just - get this - less than 1 Mbps!

I understand what you're attempting to suggest, but I imagine that the average monthly bit rates of a vast majority of consumers' connections are far less than a megabit per second.
guppy_fish
Premium
join:2003-12-09
Lakeland, FL
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
There is no 15/2 on FIOS

FIOS Current Tiers

15/5 ( when bundled with TV, provisioned 20/5 )
25/25 ( "" 30/25 )
35/35 ( "" 40/25 )

50/20 ( can not get bundle discount )
150/35 ( provisioned as 155 / 75 )
tennisman94

join:2010-02-18
Palm Harbor, FL
kudos:2

Re: put up or shut up!

35/35 (~43/37)

newview
Ex .. Ex .. Exactly
Premium
join:2001-10-01
Parsonsburg, MD
kudos:1

Lie until they're caught ...

Comcast's whole modus operandi is based on lying.
This news that they lied in advertising should not surprise anyone.

If ANY company needed investigation by the Feds, it's this one.

Metatron2008
Premium
join:2008-09-02
united state

That Comcast is a great comedian

Best hd picture quality? Whats next, Uverse saying it has the best picture quality...?

axiomatic

join:2006-08-23
Tomball, TX

Hd

Yeah agree with the rest of you. My comcast signal on the hd channels might be formatted 16:9 but it sure isn't 1080i much less 1080p. It more like 850p. I remember a site with exact resolution but I couldn't find it to link it but the punch line was similar. Not 1080p.

axiomatic

join:2006-08-23
Tomball, TX

Re: Hd

Found it!

»www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthre···=1008271

Yeah this is pretty bad.
Shuttle83

join:2005-10-23
Capitol Heights, MD

RE: Comcast Gets Wrist Slapped For Misleading Ads

Comcast lied and got caught. The problem is Comcast is more concerned about winning a marketing war than in improving it's network. It has an excellent machine for marketing, but no idea how to take on Verizon. First of all Comcast is under the notion that they do not need to improve their network, so they are not interested in the finding of viable solutions to improving it's network which believe it or not is simple. They have fiber in the ground to their control heads, but from there is goes to coax, all they need to do is go to the pedestals with fibre and from there to an ONT like unit on the customer's home. If they lack the knowledge there are many former Verizon employees skilled in FiOS out there that can be of help. I for one have designed equipment and systems for FiOS deployment, I have applied for positions at Comcast but I was rejected. A friend of mine who works at Comcast, told me it is highly unlikely for me to be hired because there are too many folks there that are faking it and that they are outright not hiring former Verizon personnel because of the ones that came before had more talent and skill than the most seasoned Comcast employee. My personal opinion is that Comcast needs to get it's act together, stop lying and upgrade its network to truly compete with Verizon.

blohner

join:2002-06-26
Cortlandt Manor, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Google Voice
·Optimum Online

Re: RE: Comcast Gets Wrist Slapped For Misleading Ads

Calling picture quality at par is a joke... Compare Comcast to FIOS on a reasonably sized TV at a distance where the human I can see full HD and the difference is like night and day... In the US at this point only FIOS acts as a pass through for the video stream from the stations without further compression. Any other provider compresses furhter - and no matter ho good they do that - it degrades quality... If the 'experts' can't distinguish that then they have the wrong job...
--
I am addicted to speed --- Boost + speed that is ---
TheBigCheese

join:2002-08-05
Philadelphia, PA

Best Picture Quality? Ho ho ho!!!

I was watching a baseball game the other day and a player removed his cap momentarily to reveal a big mop of curly hair. Then I laughed as he shook his head and his face moved but his hair stood still as if it was a loose fitting wig. Comcast allocates so little bandwidth, it can't keep up with normal motion!!!

When I'm watching at a friend's house whether it's FIOS or Satellite, the picture is 100% better.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

Re: Best Picture Quality? Ho ho ho!!!

said by TheBigCheese:

I was watching a baseball game the other day and a player removed his cap momentarily to reveal a big mop of curly hair. Then I laughed as he shook his head and his face moved but his hair stood still as if it was a loose fitting wig. Comcast allocates so little bandwidth, it can't keep up with normal motion!!!

When I'm watching at a friend's house whether it's FIOS or Satellite, the picture is 100% better.

Most fast action channels such as sports are supposed to be broadcast in 1080i or 1080p, not 720p. However, sometimes you can't blame every little problem with a live broadcast on the recoding by your cable company.. sometimes the broadcaster has issues encdoing & processing the digital image in the first place before you cable company acutally recieves it... so they have an out... but if it should happen on a pre-recorded "perfect quality" broadcast, then comcast is 100% to blame.