T-Mobile kicked for 'more minutes' ad
But TV challenge accepted
The Advertising Standards Authority has ruled against T-Mobile's claim that "You wont find more minutes for £30", but accepts that the TV challenge "See if you can find more minutes for £30" is OK.
T-Mobile's print campaign made the bold claim and was challenged by UK operator 3, which pointed out that its own £27 tariff offered more minutes. T-Mobile responded that the 3 tariff offers a mix of text and voice, and that it only offers more minutes if the customer doesn't send lots of texts.
The ASA ruled that the 3 offering does indeed offer more minutes, so in future T-Mobile won't be allowed to claim that such things can't be found. The TV on the other hand only challenged viewers to "See if you can find more minutes", presumably not expecting them to look at the 3 web site. The ASA felt this was fair enough.
As we've already noted, the point of these ads is to prevent punters looking elsewhere, and in that both ads would seem to be effective. The wording of the TV ad may have been a challenge, but the implication was that T-Mobile had the best offering. The ASA also stopped short of fining the operator, merely preventing the ads being used again in a campaign that has pretty much run its course.
Small print usually attempts to indemnify such claims, but in this case the inclusion of the words "Compared to SIM only or 18 month plans for new customers, excluding promotions" were not sufficient to get T-Mobile off the hook. ®