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Apple Gives In, Drops iPad '4G' Tag To Avoid Lawsuits 197

Posted by Soulskill
from the raging-over-letter-and-numbers dept.
Back in March, Apple was sued in Australia and criticized in Europe over its marketing of the iPad as supporting 4G speeds when it only did so in the U.S. and Canada. Now, reader TheGift73 writes with news that Apple has given in and changed the 'Wi-Fi + 4G' label to 'Wi-Fi + Cellular.' From the article: "In the U.K., a number of complaints by customers pushed the ASA into acting against Apple for its misleading advertisements. The regulator had received 'dozens of complaints' from customers, and had pushed for Apple to remove any mentions of '4G' from its websites. It should come as little surprise considering Britain has yet to see its mobile networks divide up its 4G spectrum without bickering furiously about it. Some networks had even opted to avoid litigation directed at them by including stickers to inform potential buyers that the new iPad will not work on existing 4G networks, or even 4G networks that don't even exist yet. This should come as bittersweet news for consumers. Apple has already sold millions of iPads across the U.K., Europe and Australia, while the vast majority are unaware that they will not be able to connect to high-speed mobile broadband networks."
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Apple Gives In, Drops iPad '4G' Tag To Avoid Lawsuits

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  • That is especially true if it relies upon external services that may not be available in a particular region.

    4G is available in Australia. Apple writes 4G on the box, but it doesn't work, and never will.

    The rules over here are very simple. If your product doesn't do something, you can't pretend that it does. All Apple had to do was change the packaging, but they chose not to and were prosecuted as a result.

  • Re:This just in. (Score:5, Informative)

    by philip.paradis (2580427) on Saturday May 12, 2012 @11:24PM (#39983265)

    These spamming assholes are promoting a site operated by a company called CyberDefender. Everyone should contact them via phone and fax [cyberdefender.com] to let them know what massive piles of shit they are.

    To save everyone some site, here's the contact information listed on the linked page:

    CyberDefender Corp.
    617 West 7th Street
    Los Angeles, CA 90017
    Phone: (213) 689-8631
    Fax: (213) 689-8639

  • MYCLEANPC IS A SCAM (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 12, 2012 @11:48PM (#39983335)

    It's a scam. Mycleanpc is a scam. And complete bullshit.

    Mycleanpc is spyware and a scam.

    If you use mycleanpc you are a moron.

    Mycleanpc is a scam.
    Mycleanpc is a scam.

    MyCleanPC is bullshit and spyware.

    MyCleanPC should be shut down by the FTC or FCC or SOMEBODY for being a complete bullshit scam that preys on the non tech people of the world.
    MyCleanPC.com is a scam and spyware and bullshit and complete crap and you have to be an idiot to ever let it on your computer.

  • by denpun (1607487) on Saturday May 12, 2012 @11:51PM (#39983345)

    AFIK, none in production. Many lab environments but REAL 4G does not exist in Commercial Production yet.

    LTE is not 4G.
    LTE-A is.
    IEEE 802.16m/WiMAX 2 is.

    4G is standardized and will make things better but differences in Frequency usage across the planet will still cause some roaming issues.
    Multi band phones will help but still...

    There are still kinks to sort out with 4G..Antenna Tech among others...to get the bandwidth required to meet 4G specs.
    Plus, there are no real 4G handsets out as yet either...the LTE handsets are just LTE handsets..not 4G.

    Presently, many markets are using LTE just for data.
    4G should and will also allow Voice over LTE...then that will be true 4G.

    Till then, we stuck on 3.9G !

  • It has real meaning:

    This article uses 4G to refer to IMT-Advanced (International Mobile Telecommunications Advanced), as defined by ITU-R. An IMT-Advanced cellular system must fulfill the following requirements:[5]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4G [wikipedia.org]

    Unfortunately, the real meaning cannot be legally enforced, so unscrupulous vendors (like Apple) are trying to redefine it to include 3G variants.
    http://www.theverge.com/2012/4/19/2961199/apple-redefinition-4g-australia-ipad [theverge.com]

  • by Yoda's Mum (608299) on Sunday May 13, 2012 @12:24AM (#39983445)

    Why should a consumer need to go to a manufacturer's website to determine what that manufacturer actually means when they print what are otherwise common terms on their packaging and advertising? It's entirely reasonable for a consumer to be able to expect that a feature with a common definition in their locale actually means what they think it does in their locale.

    Anyway, Australian consumer protection and advertising standards law is pretty clear in this case. If a company chooses to use advertising that sets a particular expectation of a product's capabilities, it's deemed to be false advertising if the product does not meet that expectation. The definition of those expectations is based on what the language mean in in Australia - where the advertising is being done - and nowhere in Australia does Apple's "4G" mean what they say it does. It's a pretty black and white case as far as I can see.

  • by Macthorpe (960048) on Sunday May 13, 2012 @01:24AM (#39983635) Journal

    DC-HSDPA is not a 4G network - it is part of 3GPP.

  • by tlhIngan (30335) <.slashdot. .at. .worf.net.> on Sunday May 13, 2012 @01:24AM (#39983637)

    Unfortunately, the real meaning cannot be legally enforced, so unscrupulous vendors (like Apple) are trying to redefine it to include 3G variants.

    Yep. Like Apple, HTC, Samsung, LG are also selling "4G" phones. That are not 4G. You might known them as selling "4G" Android phones. In fact, it was the considered the "Android is superior! It has 4G!" arguments.

    In fact, it's so bad that phones are calling themselves "4G LTE" to separate themselves from HSPA-DC/HSPA+ that call themselves 4G phones.

    And yes, I looked up 4G Android phones. Most only advertised HSPA+ support.

    There are no clean hands - I think T-Mobile has a pile of 4G phones, but no LTE network at all (coming with the spectrum swap). Sprint and Verizon are probably the most honest - because their old technology ended at 3G, so they need WiMax/LTE to do 4G (they don't have HSPA+ to offer "4G").

    And yes, there's the official ITU definition of 4G, and the marketing definition. Alas, the marketing definition took over in 2010-2011. Android users loved calling Apple out for not having "4G"...

  • Re:This just in. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 13, 2012 @04:42AM (#39984387)

    "And Americans need passports much less because they can travel throughout a huge continent without one. Europe"

    You should lookup "Schengen area" if you finally get your head out of your ass.

  • Re:This just in. (Score:5, Informative)

    by mrbester (200927) on Sunday May 13, 2012 @06:12AM (#39984797) Homepage

    "Do astronauts get to sue Apple, too, if they discover their 4G iPad doesn't work in orbit?"

    If it was advertised as being able to do so and thus a purchase decision was made because of that assertion, then I'd say yes.

    The iPad "4G" was advertised as working with UK 4G networks. It doesn't and never will.

  • by quenda (644621) on Sunday May 13, 2012 @07:46AM (#39985215)

    Meanwhile, many Australians unfamiliar with American vernacular will be asking "WTF is 'cellular' ?"
    It is not a term used here - we call it mobile telephony and mobile phones (as do many other countries.)

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