T-Mobile sues AT&T over use of magenta, CEO tweets barbs about crayons

Walk into any T-Mobile store and you are instantly inundated with its trademark fuchsia. We've recently learned two things about that fuchsia: 1) T-Mobile considers the hue to be a “magenta,” and 2) they take protecting it very seriously. Last Friday, the company filed a law suit against rival carrier AT&T alleging that the company’s new off-contract subsidiary Aio Wireless commandeered T-Mobiles trademark magenta in an effort to confuse consumers.

According to the complaint, “AT&T Inc set up Aio to compete directly with T-Mobile,” and Aio’s use of the color magenta “is likely to dilute T-Mobile USA, Inc. (TMUS)’s famous magenta color trademark, and to create initial interest confusion.”

T-Mobile’s combative CEO, John Legere who has never been shy about attacking AT&T has taken to Twitter to mock his company’s rival.

Aio then took to the microblogging service to say that T-Mobile “needs an art lesson. We don’t do magenta,” followed by the hashtag #Plum.

See if you can tell the difference in the puple-y hues with these two screenshots from the respective companies' websites:

T-Mobile Aio
Does Aio's website (bottom) utilize magenta or plum?
T-Mobile (top) claims the color is the same as its signature magenta.

Aio launched earlier this year to offers pre-paid, off-contract wireless service on AT&T’s networks. The company offers similar options to T-Mobile's unsubsidized Simple Choice plans, which have helped T-Mobile make a noticeable dent in the mobile market. Aio is currently only available in a few cities throughout the south, but promises to expand nationwide in the coming year.

Shop ▾
arrow up Amazon Shop buttons are programmatically attached to all reviews, regardless of products' final review scores. Our parent company, IDG, receives advertisement revenue for shopping activity generated by the links. Because the buttons are attached programmatically, they should not be interpreted as editorial endorsements.

Subscribe to the Best of PCWorld Newsletter