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  • Bad Apple: You’re a Fool if You Believe the iPhone Ads


    There has been a recent storm of lawsuits against Apple by dissatisfied iPhone 3G owners who say that the advertisements that claim the iPhone is "twice as fast for half the price" are misleading. Apple has responded to one such lawsuit with a 9 page legal statement that claims their ads are truthful, but one paragraph basically says in legal speak that anyone who fully believes their ads is a fool.

    The response is to the lawsuit filed by William Gillis, a 70 year old San Diego resident, who says he was mislead by untruthful advertisements when he decided to purchase an iPhone. The legal speak in question that Apple responded with is as follows:

    "Plaintiff's claims, and those of the purported class, are barred by the fact that the alleged deceptive statements were such that no reasonable person in Plaintiff's position could have reasonably relied on or misunderstood Apple's statements as claims of fact."

    Gillis’ lawsuit is one of many that claim Apple has misled the general public with overstating the iPhone’s performance abilities. Complaints range from dropped calls, sluggish broadband speeds and the inability to stay on 3G before it switches to the slower EDGE network.

    Apple has acknowledged some of these problems but has said the 2.2 OS would fix them. While early reports suggest that the 2.2 software has reduced the rate of dropped calls many still complain about reception issues.

    This coupled with the fact that the U.K. Advertising Standards Authority recently banned two iPhone 3G advertisements for being misleading in the UK does not look good at all for Apple.

    …One thing is certain; Apple somewhat calling its most loyal customers fools for believing their ads does not do anything to help their negative image of being an elitist company.

    Do all you iPhone owners think the ads are misleading compared to the actual performance?

    Source: Apple: Our Ads Don't Lie, But You're a Fool if You Believe Them | Gadget Lab from Wired.com
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Bad Apple: You’re a Fool if You Believe the iPhone Ads started by AppleChic View original post
    Comments 89 Comments
    1. chris_3cr's Avatar
      chris_3cr -
      So, I buy a Ferrari. Yet it turns out the roads and law enforcement won't let me drive it at the speeds it is advertised at doing. Do I sue Ferrari because they advertised a car which is capable of high speed yet the roads and law won't allow me to go that fast?

      So why are people blaming Apple that the speed of the network is not good enough? Blame your service provider. With the right service, the iPhone is capable of those speeds.
    1. bhz1's Avatar
      bhz1 -
      Quote Originally Posted by powa View Post
      I doubt this 70 years old man even know how to use a computer or go on internet. Let alone if he really knows what 3G is.

      As regards for TV misleading ad. Do you know how much does it cost to put up an AD on TV? you going to spend those time presenting the feature of the phone, or let the consumer know their actual speed? If an ad is featuring a microwave, stove, or oven, do they show how fast they actually gets the food heated up? like, just stir at the microwave for 3 mins during the commercial?

      Come on, don't act stupid, you are living in modern age, not stone age!
      I know of a few very computer literate 70 year olds. While you are probably correct for "most", don't judge a book by its cover. Let me pose it this way. If you were to pass me on the street you would never in a million years guess that I am deeply into high-tech gadgets and modding them. That I instruct high performance driving on-track and also do a bit of DIY on the cars as well as DIY around the house. I am a total information junkie that loves to acquire knowledge and apply and share it.
      Guess my age, gender and demographic.

      Those of you who do know more about me know this answer

      This said, remember advertising is meant to entice. Sometimes it is outright misleading. Marketing requires the use of words and images to portray an image in the hopes that people will buy. As consumers, we need to do our homework. A family passtime we have is pointing out the stretches of truth in commercials and advertisements, the omissions in so-called news reporting and how the general masses haven't a clue. Then when things don't meet expectations, the finger-pointing begins. As far as Apple-ATT they like it this way. What I mean is that Apple can say what their product is capable of (in ideal conditions) and not be lying. Its ATT's fault for a weak network blah, blah, blah.... ATT can turn around and blame Apple. While this is indeed a network issue, most people don't know that or can even comprehend that, although they are beginning to.

      Who really pays attention to advertising anyway? (rhetorical question) perhaps to learn about the existence of a product but that is where personal research (with the internet its not a big deal) takes over. On a big ticket item its not unreasonable to say spend 15-30 minutes Googling around. Amazing the stuff one can learn.
    1. BenzoHartt's Avatar
      BenzoHartt -
      Technically it is twice as fast if you go from 2g to Wifi.lol

      Often times i think people who aren't use to having data phones misjudge its abilities and disappoint themselves.

      SIDE BAR::: 70 years old?!?! ... Blackberries don't get that kind of love.
    1. dale1v's Avatar
      dale1v -
      Quote Originally Posted by Happy Noodle Boy View Post
      This is like trying to sue a fast food shop for not serving you a meal that looks like the ones from commercials. You know the ones I'm talking about, the ones with oh so delicious perfectly cooked meat, perfect melted slices of cheeze, the right amount of fresh tomatoes and lettuce and just enough mayonnaise to finish it up. Actual meals NEVER look like that. Do I care?
      I bet that in these ads, the company don't slag off their competitor on a regular basis, and in the ads, they tell you what you're getting, and not what it will look like. In the iPhone ads they told (<- past tense) you specifically: really really fast, real internet. But apparently, that wasn't the case, as only one iPhone advert in the UK has been approved.

      Quote Originally Posted by chris_3cr View Post
      So, I buy a Ferrari. Yet it turns out the roads and law enforcement won't let me drive it at the speeds it is advertised at doing. Do I sue Ferrari because they advertised a car which is capable of high speed yet the roads and law won't allow me to go that fast?

      So why are people blaming Apple that the speed of the network is not good enough? Blame your service provider. With the right service, the iPhone is capable of those speeds.
      I don't follow you.
      Of course you don't sue Ferrari because unlike Apple and AT&T and O2 and T-Mobile:

      > Ferrari didn't make an exclusive deal with the road contractor so that only Ferraris can drive on their private roads. Therefore, they do not make claims that it is always really really fast! Apple chose to make an exclusive deal with AT&T/O2, who they said were the "best" to host the iPhone ("best" meaning that they bid the highest. example- Vodafone have better 3G capability than O2.), then they advertise speed.

      > Speed limits and law enforcement aren't there for for Ferraris alone, they're there for all cars. Seeing as the iPhone has its own private network of roads, why the hell can't I drive as fast as you said I could?

      > You can make a Ferrari go as fast as you want at any time, be it safe to or not. Ferrari don't make ads that claim their cars to be the best /fastest. They say "top speed 170mph". You buy the car, go on the motorway, look around, and reach 170mph and be proud. An iPhone ad will tell you "speed of x kb/s, really really fast internet" with nice music playing in the background. You jump up in excitement, sign the contract, buy the phone, load a page.....then you have to gamble and hope for "optimal conditions" to get the magical advertised speed. Hardly Ferrari-like.

      >You can choose where you want to drive your Ferrari, and with what fuel you want to fill it up with. You can't on an iPhone, you stick with the network they give you, and pay through the colon if you're abroad.

      Bottom line- you can control a Ferrari's speed and direction. and you can't control an iPhone's (unless you jailbreak). I can't see an iPhone as a Ferrari of the mobile world; too many people have it, and it has had too many problems in comparison to a Ferrari for it to be called a "SuperPhone".

      And no, the iPhone isn't that fast on any current service. In the UK, where 3G is faster and more widespread than the US, pages don't load that fast. Hell, those adverts (which were recently pulled, for misleading viewers) looked smoother than WiFi, let alone 3G. The adverts were misleading, and they were pulled from UK television the other week.
    1. Labluver's Avatar
      Labluver -
      I'm happy with the iphone. Some dropped calls are annoying, but they have been dramatically reduced. I can tether my Macbook and download at 125k/sec so I can't complain about speed. My only complaint about the ad was the fact that it is only half off if you aren't already under contract. That part is very misleading.
    1. thetoothfairy's Avatar
      thetoothfairy -
      No one twisted my arm to buy the 3G..... but I do not like to pay more money per month to own it..... I don't feel its to fair......... I wish there was a way that this could change.... I can't get 3G so why do I have to pay for it? And to be honest with you I can't stand edge so I hardly ever use my iphone for email and the internet while I am away from wifi....

      I have the first generation iphone but wanted more space, and could not hear that one that well when a phone call came in..... so that is why I moved up....

      In reality Apple and Att was trying to pull the blanket over all of our eyes.... half the price and pay more for 24 months to make up the difference of what the first generation iphones cost.... they should have been honest and charged what they wanted for the iphone..... but then again by doing what they did they sold more iphone and made it so others could afford it as well....
    1. Bluprint's Avatar
      Bluprint -
      chris_3cr fix your analogy before someone else pwns you

      As an apple employee my job is to dazzle folks with iphone features, downloads, and synchronizations but we tend to hide the important stuff like speed, coverage, bugs, and applecare (it's not a warranty, but if I say it is then I'll most likely sell it and get the credit)

      anyways apple is very misleading and could care less about you as the CONSUMER
    1. andypropaganda's Avatar
      andypropaganda -
      They are very misleading, but at the same time... What advertisement isn't? How many used car dealers have "the best used cars around"? How many commercial say things that are sort of true but not fully? Every company does this, and what people probably Aden taking into account is the fact that they did not look at the map of how the 3g network extends across America. If I'm not mistaken, it's not big at all compared to edge. Also, if they would have done some research they could have found out that the 3g network is not very reliable.

      Companies try to sell their product. They are obviously going to play it up. No company is going to come out and say, "ya, our product is decent, but it drops calls and the network isn't super reliable. You should still buy it though because after all it is pretty good."
    1. Jay316's Avatar
      Jay316 -
      Apple should not do adverts showing the iPhone OS running as false speeds because it is creating the idea that the phone runs at those speeds even if it doesn't. Can you really see Apple doing ads that showed how the iPhone really works. No one would buy it if they said "get this phone, it has bluetooth but its not fully functional, it has text but no picture messaging, it has a camera, but not as good as the N95's. They have to lie about the product because telling the truth wouldn't sell any.

      P.S. chris_3cr you can do those speeds in a Ferrari if you take it on a track day
    1. MikeYuse0406's Avatar
      MikeYuse0406 -
      I do not see the add being misleading. If you read carefully all the prints in very small letters, you will notice that apple's "twice as fast speed" is on the coverage areas only. It is clearly stated in black and white, though it is stated in very small letters. As human and civilized people, you must read everything prior to making a purchase and/or signing a contract. I live in South Florida and have compared my Wife's 3G on WiFi and my 3G on 3G and the speed of WiFi is faster, but not that much faster than the 3G. However, the 3G is way faster when comparing to EDGE. Again, where I live I get full 3G coverage. I am even conected when I am inside the building.
    1. blackburn's Avatar
      blackburn -
      I own 1 2g iPhone and 2 3g iPhones and I am using my old 2g iPhone because both of my iPhone 3g are much slowerer and laggier than the 2g. I am extremely disappointed in the iPhone 3g they crash all the time and the keyboard is obsolutly terrible
    1. MikeYuse0406's Avatar
      MikeYuse0406 -
      Quote Originally Posted by blackburn View Post
      I own 1 2g iPhone and 2 3g iPhones and I am using my old 2g iPhone because both of my iPhone 3g are much slowerer and laggier than the 2g. I am extremely disappointed in the iPhone 3g they crash all the time and the keyboard is obsolutly terrible
      On the contrary, I also have a 2G, which I will be selling soon, and 2 3G. I have tested all three iPhones side by side on edge, 3G, and WiFi and the results are that the 3G is indeed better, though I feel as if the 2G back casing is more protective. I never heard of the hairline crack on the 2G. However, performance wise, I have found my 3G and my wife's 3G to be much faster than my 2G I was previously using. Since I updated to 2.2 I have noticed that both 3G are even better.
    1. thetoothfairy's Avatar
      thetoothfairy -
      Quote Originally Posted by Bluprint View Post
      As an apple employee my job is to dazzle folks with iphone features, downloads, and synchronizations but we tend to hide the important stuff like speed, coverage, bugs, and applecare (it's not a warranty, but if I say it is then I'll most likely sell it and get the credit)

      anyways apple is very misleading and could care less about you as the CONSUMER
      Wow..... at least your telling the truth about your job if this is what you have to do......
    1. Eurisko's Avatar
      Eurisko -
      I agree that anyone fully believing the Ads to be fact are foolish. You have to get your entire idea across in a 30 second commercial. And you can't be waiting in real-time for stuff to download in a commercial. What they say and what they show are two different things, and should be taken as such.

      This is like filing a class action lawsuit against Tide because the commercial shows it gets the stains out in 5 seconds flat. Give me a break.
    1. ima80baby's Avatar
      ima80baby -
      I don't care what you guys say. If a company puts out a product and makes a commercial, then they shouldn't make the commercial over exaggerate the products efficiency or anything else that potential customers are going to want. If I was selling monkeys and I told you that all of them could make pancakes, wouldn't you want that monkey to make pancakes if you bought it? The same thing applies here. You can't just tell people a product does something that it really doesn't and then expect them to act civilly about it. The fault here is clearly on Apple.
    1. Eurisko's Avatar
      Eurisko -
      Quote Originally Posted by ima80baby View Post
      You can't just tell people a product does something that it really doesn't and then expect them to act civilly about it. The fault here is clearly on Apple.
      What a device is capable of, and what it actually does are usually vastly different things. Apple doesn't control the internet. So if you can't get a fast download because your signal is weak, or the web server is busy, or the network is overloaded. That's all Apple's fault? Come' on.

      My car is capable of going 280Kph, but I've never been able to drive it that fast, maybe I should get pissed off at GM.
    1. CyberKira's Avatar
      CyberKira -
      Quote Originally Posted by bytebak View Post
      My first gen phone (week 26) has seen every update since release,Jailbroken since ibrikr,dropped,has spent 80% of its life in my pocket with my change and keys,and still does more better faster than any phone ever put on the market.my complaint is apple policy,but their product rocks.where i live they just got 3g a few weeks ago,but they have been selling the service for years,at&t even took 19.99 a month internet off the market (because its was cheaper than a regular plan i believe).a 3g iphone is ok but a 2g on tmobile is awesome!
      Amen on that bro.
    1. jayson9's Avatar
      jayson9 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ima80baby View Post
      I don't care what you guys say. If a company puts out a product and makes a commercial, then they shouldn't make the commercial over exaggerate the products efficiency or anything else that potential customers are going to want. If I was selling monkeys and I told you that all of them could make pancakes, wouldn't you want that monkey to make pancakes if you bought it? The same thing applies here. You can't just tell people a product does something that it really doesn't and then expect them to act civilly about it. The fault here is clearly on Apple.
      Bump................
    1. richardjones101's Avatar
      richardjones101 -
      all the people who complain are absolute **** heads, leave apple alone. If this was another brand, nothing would happen!

      It's not the iPhone's problem, it's just the networks they are on. I have my iphone 2G on vodafone and i get quicker web results than a friend on his 3G (o2) It proves it's AT&T+O2 that are the ones to blame
    1. quiksand's Avatar
      quiksand -
      Quote Originally Posted by Eurisko View Post
      I agree that anyone fully believing the Ads to be fact are foolish. You have to get your entire idea across in a 30 second commercial. And you can't be waiting in real-time for stuff to download in a commercial. What they say and what they show are two different things, and should be taken as such.

      This is like filing a class action lawsuit against Tide because the commercial shows it gets the stains out in 5 seconds flat. Give me a break.
      At least Tide pops up some sort of text and provides the actual time that elapsed to get those results. Before these lawsuits, Apple offered no such disclaimers.