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WStore admitted yesterday that it had been hit by a serious glitch on Monday when it started selling top-of-the-range PCs for just a few quid. PCs normally priced at £1,200 were being offered for just £12.00 - just one per cent of their true cost.

The glitch affected 90 per cent of the items available on the site and the company claims it was the result of a site upgrade that happened last Friday.

The error was fixed within an hour but two people did manage to place orders. And although the orders were confirmed and money debited from their credit cards, WStore refuses to complete the transactions. It says its Ts&Cs protect it from such mistakes. Those state: "The company reserves the right to remedy any obvious mistakes in the listed prices by charging a proper commercial value price to rectify the error."

Last month the company said it vowed to start a price war - but it probably didn't mean it to be quite so violent. Elsewhere, gadget retailer Tandy is embroiled in a dispute concerning the sale of Pace 730 On Digital Box for 1p plus £2.50 postage and packing. The box usually retails at £199.99.

Those who have bought the digital TV decoder claim there is no mention of having to subscribe to the service (which starts at £9.99 a month) as part of the 1p offer. The box can also be used to receive free digital channels, but Tandy says they can't have it unless they subscribe to the digital TV service. What Tandy and WStore have in common is that in both cases, money was debited from consumers' accounts.

A legal expert told The Register that just because money has changed hands it doesn't mean, necessarily, that the sale is complete and legally binding. Laws governing sales are not as clear-cut as some people may think. Last year retailer Argos hit the headlines when it tried to flog Sony TVs for just £3. ®

Related stories

WStore starts price war with UK channel
Argos £3 TV fiasco provokes test-case lawsuit
Argos BT's badly, ups price of Sony TV to £3,299.99
Argos welshes on three quid TV Net 'offer'

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