Australian Regulators Targeting Apple Over '4G' Marketing Claims on New iPad
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Australian regulators are taking action to address "misleading" marketing claims regarding the new iPad, with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announcing that it will pursue injunctions, fines and other remedies in its case. The issue stems from Apple's use of "4G" in its marketing terms for the cellular-capable models of the new iPad, while 4G LTE compatibility is actually only offered in the United States and Canada due to differences in the frequency bands used for LTE in different countries.
“The ACCC alleges that Apple's recent promotion of the new "iPad with WiFi + 4G" is misleading because it represents to Australian consumers that the product "iPad with WiFi + 4G" can, with a SIM card, connect to a 4G mobile data network in Australia, when this is not the case.
The competition regulator said it was seeking injunctions, penalties, corrective advertising and refunds to consumers who were misled.
Apple has added fine print in several places on its website to clarify that LTE connectivity is not available in most countries, but the ACCC clearly feels that this step is insufficient and that the company should cease using the "4G" term in association with the iPad in countries where the device is incompatible with LTE networks.