UK Continues Inquiry Into iPad 4G Advertising Claims


In March, a number of regulatory organizations announced they were looking into Apple's advertising claims surrounding the 4G capabilities of the new iPad. The Advertising Standards Authority in the United Kingdom has announced it doesn't feel Apple has adjusted its iPad 4G advertising to comply with local laws, reports the BBC.

Apple's UK site still offers consumers the chance to buy a "wi-fi + 4G" version of the iPad.

A footnote explains that "4G LTE" is supported only on certain networks in the United States and Canada.

The ASA said it had since been contacted by several complainants who had identified other "potentially problematic claims" about the iPad and 4G on the website.

"If it appears that the problem claims we asked Apple to remove are still appearing," the regulator said, "we will investigate these new complaints."

4G networks haven't arrived in Britain yet, and when they do, the networks won't be supported by the new iPad. The iPad only connects to 4G LTE networks in Canada and the United States. Apple has been offering refunds to consumers who feel misled by the company's 4G claims.

The UK has strict regulation of advertising claims and Apple's marketing has been the subject of several decisions from the ASA. In 2008, the agency banned an iPhone ad over misleading claims, while a more recent decision regarding claims of the world's thinnest smartphone came down in Apple's favor. The ASA also ruled in Apple's favor earlier this year in a dispute over advertising for Siri on the iPhone 4S.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
111 months ago

Looks like Apple have removed pretty much all the references to 4G and LTE except for in the online store where they refer to it as a "Wifi + 4G" model and in the technical specifications. Guess they haven't gone far enough.

Strangely they don't refer to 3G anywhere at all either and use UMTS, HSPA, HSPA+, DC-HSDPA instead. Which will probable confuse people further.

Still can't believe they made such a mess of this, wonder who'll be in the firing line for it?

Agree. Why didn't they just call it WiFi + 3G outside of the supported 4G territories? It would have avoided this whole mess.

Either the 4G works and should be advertised as a selling point or it doesn't and shouldn't.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
111 months ago

Ha!! Why anyone's bothered about 4G support on the iPad in the UK I don't know.

3G coverage is dire in this country (and even 2G is far from brilliant). By the time we get halfway decent 4G coverage here the iPad 8 will be out and the US will have 6G.

Well no, HSPA+ is also considered 4G in the US but in the UK its considered 3G. Even Three UK aren't using it as their rolling out their DC-HSPA, because people didn't want them to end up like the carriers in the US.

The UK had the first consumer 3G network (over 10 years ago), and if you look at Three UK, they cover pretty much most the country.

4G will come to the UK, but its probably going to be LTE-Advanced, which is true 4G.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
111 months ago

3G coverage is dire in this country

Is it? Which countries is it better in?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
111 months ago
It's simply not a 4G device in the UK, and they shouldn't be calling it 4G in the UK. It's made even more stupid (in the screenshot shown) by plonking the logos of the UK carriers next to the 4G, none of whom will providing a 4G plan that works on this iPad. They might as well put Verizon and AT&T logos there if they're going to call it 4G.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
111 months ago
Once the Analogue Broadcast network is switched off in November, the comms spectrum will be sold off to the telcos for a nice premium. Even then, once the 4G network is in place, the UK will be using a different frequency network compared to the US, so it still won't work. Hope the iPhone 5, when released, will support multi frequency band switching to allow 4G in all countries.

Web: (
Twitter: @InfuriousLtd (!/InfuriousLtd)
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
111 months ago
Looks like Apple have removed pretty much all the references to 4G and LTE except for in the online store where they refer to it as a "Wifi + 4G" model and in the technical specifications. Guess they haven't gone far enough.

Strangely they don't refer to 3G anywhere at all either and use UMTS, HSPA, HSPA+, DC-HSDPA instead. Which will probable confuse people further.

Still can't believe they made such a mess of this, wonder who'll be in the firing line for it?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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