THE UK ADVERTISING STANDARDS AUTHORITY (ASA) has banned two Samsung Galaxy Tab adverts, having found that they were misleading.
In a ruling published on Wednesday, the ASA said it received complaints about two Samsung Galaxy Tab adverts, one on TV and the other online, that said customers would receive a free Samsung tablet or a discount when they upgraded to a high-end Samsung smartphone.
The adverts claimed that users could receive a free Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 worth £279, or other discounted smartphone devices, when they traded in their old smartphone. The TV ad stated, for example, "Trade up now to a Galaxy Note II and you could get a free Tab 2 or money off selected Samsung products."
However, complaints flooded in after viewers realised that Samsung's offer wasn't quite what it seemed.
At the end of the TV advert, on-screen text said "T&Cs apply, selected smartphones, 16+", while the online ad stated that the product offer was only available for "selected smartphones".
However, the free Galaxy Tab 2 offer was only available when customers traded in an iPhone 4, iPhone 4S or Samsung Galaxy S3, meaning that just three phones were eligible for the offer, despite Samsung's argument that different models of the iPhone 4, such as the 16GB and 32GB, counted as two separate devices.
The ASA ruled on Tuesday that the adverts were indeed misleading, and ordered that Samsung no longer show them.
The regulator said in its decision, "We considered the condition that three smartphones could be traded in for consumers to receive the free Galaxy Tab 2 was significant and therefore needed to be clearly stated in the ad. We therefore concluded the ad was misleading."
"The ads must not appear again in their current form. We told Samsung Electronics (UK) Ltd to make clear that the Tab 2 was only free for those who handed in one of a very limited range of smartphones."
Samsung said in a statement sent to The INQUIRER, "We have assisted the ASA Council throughout this investigation and we will comply with the recommendations made." µ
It's time for our regular two-step through the Google news
Bug bounty offer: accepted