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Mobile Broadband Advert Complaint against T-Mobile Not Upheld

Posted: 10th Sep, 2008 By: MarkJ
The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has not upheld an interesting complaint by BT and a member of the public against a national press advert for T-Mobile's 3GB (£15 per month) 'Web n Walk Plus' Mobile Broadband service.

BT challenged whether the claims "Never pay more than £15 a month" and "No matter how much you surf there are no extra costs" were misleading because the small-print stated that there was a usage limit.

BT believed that customers who went over the limit had to pay to upgrade their price plan, though they neglected to realise that customers had a choice and would suffer other restrictions instead (outlined below):

[T-MOBILE] said the claim "unlimited" was directly asterisked to small-print that stated clearly the existence of their fair-use policy. They said it was a policy and not a finite allowance which would have meant further costs applied once it had been used up. They believed the fair use policy only excluded atypical users. They explained that, if a customer exceeded the 3GB per month limit, they would be told to reduce future usage and, if they exceeded the limit again, their network speed might be reduced for 14 days.

T-Mobile said if the customer continued to abuse the fair-use policy, their network speed would be slowed down permanently. They said a slowed down customer could request to upgrade their price plan in order to include a larger data allowance, but this accounted for a very small percentage of their customers and they did not force customers to upgrade if they had breached the fair-use policy.

Full adjudication:
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