Wi-Fi Ready... Not! Sony, Samsung And LG Get Wrist Slapping From ACCC

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission yesterday announced that five TV manufacturers -- Samsung, Sharp, LG, Sony and Panasonic -- had failed to make clear in their advertising the need for a separate adaptor to use the Wi-Fi features on TVs boasting the "Wi-Fi Ready" branding. As a result, the companies must now remove the branding, or make it clear that an extra purchase is necessary.

Image: Wi-Fi Alliance

According to the ACCC, any manufacturer that uses the phrases "Wi-Fi Ready" or "Wireless LAN Ready" on their promotional material must make sure it's "accompanied by prominent statements" pointing out the need for a USB dongle or adaptor to utilise the feature.

The ACCC begin its investigation after a consumer complained of buying a "Wi-Fi Ready" TV, only to be greeted once home by an on-screen message asking for an adaptor. It wouldn't be so bad a problem if the adaptor only cost a couple of bucks, but according to the ACCC, prices of $100 or more are not uncommon.

It wasn't long ago Apple ran afoul of the ACCC after it started selling the new, "4G"-capable iPad in Australia. Apple was forced to remove the 4G branding and pay a $2+ million fine. I guess the likes of Sony and LG got off easy this time.

WiFi Ready or not? Manufacturers clarify promotions [ACCC, via SMH]


    They didn't get off easy. Wi-Fi Ready is pretty clear - It doesn't say "Wi-Fi" the ready is pretty clear, that it isn't included.

      What about when a TV says HD Ready? Does that mean it can play HD? Or you need an adapter for a HD picture?
      Of course we all know it means it can display a HD picture.

      Disagree completely. The word 'ready' implies just that, it's ready to go with your wifi network. Oh, except that it's not yet. Pay us more of your money please.

      This kind of behaviour from corporations definitely requires naming and shaming >

    For the tech aware people this may not be such an issue, but those who didn't grow up with HD TV and all the other tech gizmos out there it can lead to confusion, which of course is the manufacturers aim. If it wasn't their aim then they already have the extra info on there in nice bold print. As always buyer beware.

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