Feeds

BT's mobe interference claim laughed off air by ad watchdog

Telco slapped for misleading customers over mobiles, radio

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

BT misled consumers with a TV ad that wrongly claimed that mobile phones and radios caused interference with wireless networks, the Advertising Standards Authority has ruled.

A voice-over in BT's commercial crowed that such devices, alongside other household gadgets, caused "no end" of disruption to Wi-Fi internet connections in the home.

The telecoms giant then boasted that the signal on its new Home Hub "avoids interference" from non-wireless kit such as baby monitors that used the same radio band.

A complainant successfully challenged BT's claim, by arguing that the telco had implied that radios and mobile phones caused "significant" interruptions to Wi-Fi networks.

The ASA agreed, despite BT contesting the complaint by saying that – based on a 2009 communications regulatory report from Ofcom – the 2.4 GHz spectrum was "heavily congested and susceptible to interference".

The watchdog said it had sought clarification from Ofcom, which advised the ASA that mobile radio devices and mobile phones did not pose particular problems to wireless networks. It said:

We were concerned that the ad prominently featured a ringing mobile phone, when using such a device for telephone calls would not cause interference of the kind described. We further noted that the ad also featured images of radios, which Ofcom had also advised did not pose a particular problem in terms of interference.

Whilst we acknowledged that the evidence supplied by BT showed that some non-Wi-Fi household devices could potentially affect the performance of Wi-Fi devices, we considered that the inclusion of images of mobile phones and radios implied that consumers who had those items in their homes may experience problems due to interference when we had not seen any evidence to that effect. We therefore concluded that the ad was misleading.

The regulator ruled that the ad must not be broadcast on television again in its current form. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Of COURSE Stephen Elop's to blame for Nokia woes, says author
'Google did have some unique propositions for Nokia'
FCC, Google cast eye over millimetre wireless
The smaller the wave, the bigger 5G's chances of success
It's even GRIMMER up North after MEGA SKY BROADBAND OUTAGE
By 'eck! Eccles cake production thrown into jeopardy
Mobile coverage on trains really is pants
You thought it was just *insert your provider here*, but now we have numbers
Don't mess with Texas ('cos it's getting Google Fiber and you're not)
A bit late, but company says 1Gbps Austin network almost ready to compete with AT&T
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.