Samsung agrees to pay $14 million fine for misleading Galaxy ads | Samsung

Samsung has agreed to pay a $14 million fantastic for deceptive claims that seven of its Galaxy telephones are waterproof when the units cease working after being utilized in swimming pools or ocean water.

Decide Michael Murphy has agreed to a settlement between the tech firm and the Australian Competitors and Client Fee (ACCC) within the long-running case that was launched in 2019on advertisements for seven Galaxy cellphone fashions.

The competitors watchdog alleged that Samsung misled and deceived prospects with its allegations in regards to the telephones throughout greater than 300 advertisements since February 2016. In courtroom on Thursday, Samsung’s legal professional, Nicholas de Younger, stated the total account of the affected advertisements got here to 684.

On-line, tv, and billboard commercials have proven that telephones are waterproof and utilized in swimming pools and seashores, though telephones are usually not appropriate to be used in pool water or saltwater.

Agreed settlement of a a lot smaller set of advertisements. Samsung agreed in settling the case that 9 advertisements for seven units promoted over the two-and-a-half years between 2016 and 2018 had been deceptive.

The corporate admitted that if the units had been utilized in saltwater or swimming swimming pools, there was a “tangible potential for harm as a consequence of corrosion within the cellphone’s charging port,” ACCC legal professional Karen Van Proctor informed the courtroom.

Throughout that point, Samsung offered 3 million Galaxy cellphone fashions included within the settlement in Australia.

The issue will come up when folks go to cost their cellphone whereas there may be nonetheless water within the charging port, despite the fact that a warning seems on the cellphone advising the consumer to not cost it. The courtroom heard that Samsung has since mounted this difficulty with {hardware} and software program adjustments on later Galaxy cellphone fashions.

Whereas there was some info offered to the courtroom in regards to the variety of views the Fb and Twitter advertisements obtained — with a whole bunch of hundreds of views every — the courtroom heard that there was no approach of realizing what number of shoppers purchased the units from the again of the gadget. Ads, nor the quantity of people that have had a cellphone malfunction because of utilizing it in pool or ocean water after which charging it.

In agreeing to the $14 million settlement, Murphy stated many shoppers would have used their telephones the best way they seem in advertisements, counting on these acknowledgments.

He stated the $14 million can be a deterrent and was a “actual and sufficient chew” for 14% of Samsung Australia’s earnings over the previous six years. He additionally criticized the cellphone maker for under cooperating in fixing the issue not too long ago after years of opposition to the ACCC case.

He criticized the best way merchandise are sometimes marketed in Australia, saying the Federal Court docket usually hears instances the place merchandise are oversold to shoppers in advertising and marketing campaigns.

Samsung was ordered to pay $14 million plus a contribution of $200,000 to ACCC prices inside 30 days of the order.

Gina Kass-Gottlib, chair of the Coordination and Financial savings Committee, welcomed the ruling.

“Samsung Australia advertisements selling their Galaxy telephones present folks utilizing their telephones in swimming pools and sea water, even supposing this might find yourself inflicting vital harm to the cellphone,” Cass-Gottlieb stated.

“This penalty is a robust reminder to companies that each one product claims should be confirmed. The ACCC will proceed to take enforcement motion towards corporations that mislead shoppers with claims in regards to the nature or advantages of their merchandise.”

A Samsung spokesperson stated the corporate examined the merchandise extensively with sea and pool water, however welcomed the case being closed.

“Samsung strives to offer the absolute best expertise for all of its prospects. Samsung regrets if any Galaxy customers expertise a problem with their gadget because of the issues coated on this case.”

The Samsung units included within the settlement are the Galaxy S7, S7 Edge, A5, A7, S8, S8 Plus, and Note8 telephones.