Comcast told to nix ads saying it delivers nation’s fastest internet service

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The Better Business Bureau’s National Advertising Division has asked Comcast to stop making claims that it “delivers the fastest internet in America.” 

Among a series of other admonishments, the group told Comcast to stop running ads saying Xfinity Internet “delivers the fastest, most reliable in-home Wi-Fi,” and also to stop claiming that Verizon is discontinuing phone service in certain markets. 

To support its claim that Xfinity delivers the fastest internet service, NAD said, Comcast relied on crowdsourced data from Ookla’s Speedtest application.

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“Ookla’s ‘fastest internet in America’ award is based on a different methodology than previous NAD cases involving superior speed claims, but is also intended to show the ‘top-end performance of a given ISP,’” NAD said. 

“However, NAD noted in its decision, instead of relying on an aggregation of crowdsourced data on download and upload speeds, Ookla based its award on the top 10 percent of each ISP’s Speedtest download results,” the org added. “NAD determined that Ookla’s methodology wasn’t a good fit for the purposes of substantiating Comcast’s overall superior speed performance claim that ‘Xfinity delivers the fastest internet in America.’ NAD recommended the claim be discontinued.”

As for claims about Xfinity’s Wi-Fi superiority, the group said, that, “Although Comcast provided a reasonable basis for a claim that Xfinity provides faster in-home Wi-Fi than FiOS, based on router speed testing, NAD recommended that Comcast expressly modify future claims to make clear that only users of 5GHz (or dual) band devices would experience the superior performance claimed.”

NAD said Comcast has appealed these recommendations. 

Comcast reps didn’t immediately respond to FierceCable’s inquiry for comment. 

For more:
- read this National Advertising Division press release
- read this Ars Technica story
- read this MediaPost story

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