EC to tackle 'misleading' online gadget sellers
Over 200 'problem' websites slammed
More than half of Europe's online gadget sellers failed to provide buyers with correct sales information or misled punters over pricing, an European Commission investigation has concluded.
EC investigators visited 369 European websites selling “six of the most popular electronic goods”: compact cameras, phones, MP3 players, DVD players, computer equipment and games consoles in May. The sites investigated included 200 of the biggest retailers and "more than 100 websites... targeted on the basis of consumer complaints".
Just over 200 of the sites investigated were found to be misleading consumers on some way, the EC said. Of these, 66 per cent gave incorrect details about customers' consumer rights, such as their right to return goods bought online or by mail within a minimum of seven days without giving a reason. Some sites presented statutory rights as special offers.
Forty-five per cent of the "problem" sites misled buyers about a gadget’s total price, the EC alleged, by - for example - promising free postage but then charging for delivery.
A third of the sites that troubled investigators failed to provide complete company contact details, the EC said.
Of all 369 sites examined, 14 were based in the UK. Six of them were marked for further investigation, which will be carried out by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT). They will be asked to clarify their position or correct the alleged errors highlighted by the investigation.
“Failure to bring a website in line with the law can result in legal action leading to fines or websites being closed”, the EU warned.
None of the 14 UK sites were named in the report, but Iceland and Norway, who both joined the EU probe, have since named local online retailers investigated by the EC.
For example, Vodafone’s Icelandic website and Pixmania.com’s site in Norway were both revealed to have been flagged for further investigation.
Enforcement results will be published next year. ®
You do get 60Gb hdd and 1 month xbox live for 155
For £155-£165 (froogle) you do get 60GB hard drive indeed.You also receive free one month xbox live subscription and therefore, without paying extra, it is possible to get movies for £5 a pop with a £155 device. Even tesco direct price is £165 and it is always more expensive than technology specific outlets.
You don't get a HDMI cable but its only a few pounds if you know where to buy from.
That'll be PC world, Curry's and Dixons out of business then.
MarkOne's point seemed absolutely valid? Can you access the Xbox movie service with a £159 XBox? Taking your own figures, it's a £200 XBox you need apparently (or £239 if you buy separately). Retail prices, however, would seem to make it a £279 console needed (including all necessary options and subscriptions).
Whichever way you look at it, £159 comes across as being way short of the mark, and therefore misleading imho.
I know it's not gadgets but....
Will they please take a look at Ryanair and sort them out.
I looked to buying flights with them and they insist on this £10 charge for using a debit or credit charge, even though they get charged only a fraction of that.
I was about to purchase tickets when I noticed that they multiply that £10 by the number of tickets you are purchasing even though it's only one transaction. Family of five? £50 please. Cheeky scumbags.
IT angle - well it does allow web checkin, although I can't quite see how I can get my luggage to them via a website
Actually I don't own a PS3, I just laugh at all the morons who assume I do because I think they are brainwashed muppets for falling for Microsoft stupid PR tricks.
You my friend are a prime example, you went off into fanboy rant when presented with factual information about hidden Xbox costs.