“Indestructible” Motorola Defy ad defied by the ASA

“Indestructible” Motorola Defy ad defied by the ASA
Motorola has been handed another setback by the British Advertising Standards Agency. The victims this time were two ads promoting the Motorola Defy as “life proof”.  The ads showed the phone dropped on floors, in pools, and generally abused during raucous night-life scenarios. Accompanying the ads were motion graphics announcing that the phone was “dance floor proof” and “pool party proof”.

The ASA received multiple complaints from individuals that had apparently broken their phones in a manner similar to what is depicted in the ad. Motorola responded that the ad was not misleading, as it was shot with a single real phone, without enhancement from computer graphics (and presumably without the use of a “stunt phone”).

Motorola also claimed that the phones were tested extensively, with phones dropped from a variety of heights onto a wide range of services.  The Defy was put through an accelerated life testing program, with individual Defy units dropped as many as 25 times.  During the testing phase Motorola advises that about 1.5% of the time the screen was damaged during a fall.

The ASA found that in general the ad would be viewed as advertising a phone that was damage-resistant rather than break-proof.  They still asked for the ads to be pulled and revised, however, due to the specific height from which the phonies shown dropping in the ads.  They said that Motorola did not provide specific evidence that the handset could regularly survive falls of the height depicted, and that in fact the data sent to the ASA showed that damage was a likely occurrence to the screen when dropped from a similar height.

Earlier this year Motorola Mobility had to pull and revise ads claiming that the Motorola Atrix 4G was “the world’s fastest smartphone” because the dual-core CPU was clocked slower than the 1.2 GHz dual-core Samsung Galaxy S II.  You can take a look at the ad below to make up your own mind about whether or not it's misleading:

source: ASA via reghardware



1. bolaG

Posts: 468; Member since: Aug 15, 2011

ITS A COMMERCIAL!!! Commercials are always over the top! Look at food commercials; the burgers are alwasy the God like meal made by a 5 star cheff lol. Why would anyone want to test their phones like that in the first place?!! Just know that your phone is pretty dam durable and use it normally. Don't go out and start DROPPING IT FROM 100FT and expect it to not brake because a commercial said so.

2. skymitch89

Posts: 1452; Member since: Nov 05, 2010

I don't see anything wrong with the ad, except that it's 1min long. People shouldn't get mad that the glass breaks. My friend had the US T-Mo version and he cracked the glass on it because he threw it at a brick wall, but nothing else happened. I don't really think that a Defy would go through that much in one day. Also, it says "Water Resistant, Scratch Resistant, Dust Proof" and says nothing about guaranteeing that they are.

3. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

i dont see anything wrong with the ad either. this is a government agency nit picking too much. ugh.. i hate nanny state antics.

4. corporateJP

Posts: 2458; Member since: Nov 28, 2009

What a bunch of wankers at the ASA.

5. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

The ASA is another example of the government taking s**t way, way too seriously.

6. GeckoHA559

Posts: 47; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

We should not forget that its also a crap ad as well.

7. ardent1

Posts: 2000; Member since: Apr 16, 2011

Perhaps Motorola needs to revisit the 1.5% failure rate.

8. mozes316

Posts: 144; Member since: Sep 30, 2011

I think common sense would tell you that the phone can be damaged... Come on Britain. lol I saw a commercial where the kid decided he didn't want to do drug and then it turned out he was the cool kid in school... proof that not everything shown on TV is true.

9. roscuthiii

Posts: 2383; Member since: Jul 18, 2010

Wait! WTF! Commercials and advertisements use hyperbole? Are you friggin tellin me that if I buy a Droid Razr that it won't fly around the city cutting stuff in half?!

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