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Apple accused of falsely advertizing iPads as “4G” devices in Australia

Posted: , by Victor H.

Apple accused of falsely advertizing iPads as “4G” devices in Australia
The new iPad could seduce you not only with its Retina display, but also with its support for fast 4G LTE networks stateside on both Verizon and AT&T. 4G LTE-enabled iPads also make use of Canadian LTE networks, but this closes the circle of counries supporting LTE. And Australia is definitely not included, but Apple is still advertizing its new iPad as toting 4G.

Now, Apple clarifies that this only means support for slower HSPA+ data rates and not LTE, but local watchdog, The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission, or ACCC, claims such advertizing is misleading.

“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 ACCC said.

Obviously, Australia is not kidding around with the term 4G and is applying it strictly to LTE and not to HSPA+. We should mention that Apple does note 4G support for the Australian iPad means only HSPA+ in the small print:

“The iPad with Wi-Fi + 4G model can roam worldwide on fast GSM/UMTS networks, including HSPA, HSPA+, and DC-HSDPA. When you travel internationally, you can use a micro-SIM card from a local carrier. You can also connect to the 4G LTE networks of AT&T in the U.S. and Bell, Rogers, and Telus in Canada.”

Here is how Apple markets the iPad in Australia.

Here is how Apple markets the iPad in Australia.


This however is no excuse in the Land Down Under, which insists that its users have less of a headache making out the difference between 4G LTE and “4G” HSPA+.

Rewinding back to the times when the LTE debate kicked off, you might remember that even though initially the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) denied HSPA+ the 4G status, it later gave in to carrier pressure and agreed to include the technology to its 4G definition. Australia obviously doesn’t agree with such a view on the matter, and that’s why it wants to ban the misleading iPad advertizing.

With that in mind, feel free to comment on the story but also do let us know how you feel about the marketting of the term 4G: is it misleading for you, do you confuse LTE for HSPA+ or the other way around?


17 Comments
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posted on 27 Mar 2012, 08:43 2

1. NOKIA.8800.ARTE (Posts: 100; Member since: 26 Mar 2012)


T®R®U®E
its misleading....
LT differs from 4G

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 08:50 9

2. medicci37 (Posts: 690; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)


I thought Apple refused to call HSPA+ 4g ?

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 10:25 6

4. remixfa (Posts: 14060; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


they think everything is 4g now. They've updated the i4s to say "4g" now, even though it doesnt break 14.4mb/s

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 18:21 4

15. darkkjedii (Posts: 12374; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


Remixfa where have u been. You've been taking it easy on apple lately. Wassup with that?

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 09:25 5

3. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)


Apple should be iMpriSoned for miSrepresenting its' product and miSleading the public [again] …

By the way, this article typed on an iSomething as evidenced by the typo' above, 'counries supporting LTE'??

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 11:40 6

5. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4335; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


Apple has a LONG history of this, are we really surprised? Just add it to the list of "so called" Apple fluke "misunderstandings"! After so many of these "types" of errors, when is it safe to say that this maybe IS intentional? Maybe they want to see how much they can get away with. Deliberately trying to confuse customers into bogus sales? We will never know.

To me Apple is capable of anything & who knows why “these” types of misunderstandings seem to happen to Apple more than others. It just seems VERY fishy.

Food for thought people!

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 11:47 3

6. cncrim (Posts: 530; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)


Hey Apple's Fanboy APPLE JUST INVENTED LTE OUT HSPA+, quick Apple patent that before someone else claim the technology. LOL

It's depend how you look at it, misleading I say yes and no. For me, I said yes Apple did mislead because HSPA+ is not LTE, I believe Apple being a d**k with the patents(try to ban all the competition) and wont licensing the capacity touch screen so now whoever hold LTE technology do the same thing what Apple did. Apple don't have LTE technology license but HSPA+. And no because some country is except it as 4G so why not advertise as 4g.

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 12:08

7. Bluesky02 (Posts: 1439; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)


Apple is playing with title now

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 12:11 3

8. bayusuputra (Posts: 941; Member since: 12 Feb 2012)


if apple is not misleading, then i would be very surprised..

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 12:50 3

9. -box- (Posts: 3858; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)


...why is T-Mobile's advertising used as the image for this article? Other than the "4G" part, it has nothing to do with this article. Might as well have a picture of Steve Irwin wrestling an ipad

posted on 28 Mar 2012, 15:13

17. solidsnakeduds013 (Posts: 217; Member since: 20 Oct 2010)


same thing I was wondering

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 13:38 2

10. tedkord (Posts: 5113; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


I'm no Apple lover, but they're not really misleading if it does have LTE connectivity. It's still a 4G device. I still consider my Thunderbolt a 4G device even in areas where there's no 4G service.

It would be nice if they had a disclaimer that states there is no 4G in Australia, if that's the case. They may be out of line with the spirit of the law, but not the letter, from what I'm reading here.

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 14:57 1

11. Stuntman (Posts: 754; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)


Now we know why Apple did not call the new iPad the iPad 3. They want people to confuse it with a 4G product.

I know someone who thought the iPhone 4 was 4G just because of the 4.

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 15:38

12. Chasers (Posts: 21; Member since: 27 Nov 2011)


This is supprising. Espesially since the Ipad 2 worked on ATTs HSPA+ so if they wanted they could have marketed it as 4G. However, I have always said HSPA+ should not be called 4G. T-Mobile maybe has the only exception because in certaiain areas their HSPA + is just as fast as LTE.

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 16:40 1

13. andro. (Posts: 1971; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


Apple misleading the public...ah come on,this has to be a joke right?!

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 18:21 1

16. darkkjedii (Posts: 12374; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


Shhhhhhhhhhhhh

posted on 27 Mar 2012, 17:03

14. netizen (Posts: 33; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)


This is what a company has to do when they are 2 years behind in the highest speed connectivity speeds. The Evo came out on Sprint nearly 2 years ago with wimax 4G speeds.
Apple could have made an iphone with LTE or Wimax antenna but it would have reduced battery life and that would have upset their customers so Apple chose to use the slower 3G connections for battery life.
This is the difference between Android and Apple. Apple is rock solid and reliable with long battery life but it is always behind Android on being cutting edge.
You choose if you want to sacrifice the reliability and battery life to be on the cutting edge of technology when you choose between Android and Apple.
Apple was once on the cutting edge... now they are not due to their insistence on making highly reliable and idiot proof phones that "Just work".
For 85% of the public who aren't tech savvy, the iphone is their best choice, or for someone who doesn't want to deal with the issues that come with being on the cutting edge of technology with an android phone.
I hate when companies try to claim things that are false like this though which Apple, AT&T and T-mobile are all guilty of doing trying to claim HSPA is 4G. They aren't fooling anyone who understands what those terms mean.
Kudos to Australia for trying to keep Truth in advertising. I wish the US would do the same.

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