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October 29, 2008

Vodafone reveals basis for mobile broadband ad

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by Jan Harris

The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has been investing complaints about Vodafone adverts which claim that the company’s mobile broadband service is the most reliable and fastest available and is light years ahead of the competition.

The adverts generated complaints from the general public and also from mobile operators 3 and T-Mobile.

The complaints were upheld by the ASA, although it didn’t query the validity of the study on which Vodafone’s ‘fastest and most reliable’ claim was based.

This study was commissioned by LCC, the world’s largest independent wireless engineering company.

It looked at independent mobile broadband testing across the UK, between March and May 2008.

The ASA did, however, recommend that Vodafone should support its claim to offer the fastest and most reliable mobile broadband with further information, to allow readers of the advert to understand the basis for the claims.

Ian Shepher, Vodafone UK’s Consumer Director said: “Funding independent research to determine the quality of our network is crucial for Vodafone UK so it can help customers make informed purchasing decisions around mobile broadband. It also further informs our continued multi-million pound 3G network investment plans, as Vodafone UK is committed to delivering quality, speed and reliability”.

Vodafone points out that the LCC study showed that Vodafone’s mobile broadband was up to 77% faster when downloading a 2MB file, compared to the slowest operator in the study.

Vodafone’s service was also up to 278% faster in opening a web page compared to slowest operator performance.

In carrying out the study LCC purchased equipment from each operator’s own store, and Vodafone did not know where or when the tests would be carried out, in order to ensure independence.

LCC carried out 28000 tests over 10 weeks, in 140 locations, including airports, hotels and offices.

Story link: Vodafone reveals basis for mobile broadband ad


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