What Spurred This iPad Branding Change From Apple?
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has had a partial change of heart after a string of complaints around the world regarding the iPad’s network connectivity capabilities and will market the tablet differently in several countries.
Apple’s branding of the 4G-LTE compatible new iPad had received censure in countries such as Australia and the United Kingdom, with the former resorting to a lawsuit to demand an explanation from the company. 4G, or fourth generation, mobile technology that uses the Long Term Evolution (LTE) system is prevalent in the U.S., but is either not available in all other countries where the iPad is sold, or uses an incompatible frequency. Now, instead of staying open to further legal trouble or fines, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will brand its tablet as “iPad WiFi + Cellular” from the earlier “iPad WiFi + 4G.”
“Carriers do not all refer to their high speed networks with the same terminology,” Apple said in a statement, “therefore we’ve decided to use ‘wi-fi + cellular’ as a simple term which describes all the high speed networks supported by the new iPad. The advanced wireless features of the new iPad have not changed.”
Carriers of wireless service for Apple’s products include: AT&T (NYSE:T), Verizon (NYSE:VZ), Sprint (NYSE:S).
It has made the change in Australia, New Zealand and the U.K, though not in Sweden, France, and Germany, where the information that LTE is not available on all networks is provided in a footnote.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission took Apple to court in March, arguing that the company was misleading consumers. Apple had then reacted by announcing it would refund any customer who may have been misled by the claim. The Advertising Standards Authority in the U.K. was also investigating the company, though not in court.
Investing Insights: Will Intel’s Windows 8 Tablets Help Microsoft Catch Up?