Apple was less than truthful in advertising its iPad in Australia, by claiming it had “4G” capability, which mislead potential buyers. Now the Cupertino giant has paid for it with a $2.29 million fine.
The case was brought by regulators shortly following the iPad’s release in Australia, when the company began advertising the tablet as “iPad with WiFi + 4G” though it cannot connect to Australia’s fourth-generation LTE network. Apple will also have to pay 300,000 Australian dollars in litigation costs…
The cellular version of the new iPad supports supports both 700MHz and 2100MHz LTE bands, but Australia’s only 4G network run by Telstra operates in the 1800MHz band, thus leaving users with only 3G data speeds.
Justice Mordy Bromberg said Apple misled the public and contravened Australian consumer law. “The conduct concerned was deliberate and very serious. It exposed a significant proportion of Australian consumers of tablet devices to a misleading representation.”
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is pleased with the fine, arguing it reflects Apple’s size.
Though Apple settled the case with the ACCC earlier this month, Bromberg had delayed a ruling until he had details on how many iPads had been sold and were then returned under Apple’s refund offer and upon obtaining further information on Apple’s financial position.
Apple now markets the “4G” iPad 3 abroad simply as “Wi-Fi + Cellular”.