Fair Trading Act charges laid against Vodafone New Zealand
Posted on 23-Oct-2009 15:30.
Filed under: News
The Commerce Commission has laid charges against Vodafone New Zealand for alleged breaches of the Fair Trading Act 1986 in relation to various broadband and mobile phone promotions.
The charges relate to various representations made by Vodafone regarding:
* the extent of the coverage of Vodafone’s wireless broadband network, made in Vodafone’s ‘broadband everywhere’ marketing campaign between October 2006 and April 2008;
* the availability of a $10 free airtime credit for those customers who registered their details on Vodafone’s website between May 2007 and September 2008;
* the cost of using the Vodafone Live mobile internet service between February 2007 and August 2008;
* the cost of using Vodafone’s $1 per day casual data charge for Vodafone’s mobile internet service between July 2008 and November 2008;
* the size of Vodafone’s mobile phone or 3G mobile phone network between September 2008 and February 2009; and
* the price of a Sony Ericsson W200 mobile phone between July and August 2007.
The Commerce Commision advised that there will be no further comment as the matter is now before the courts.
Vodafone's spokeperson Alison Sykora distributed a release where Vodafone claims to be surprised by this action. "It appears to relate to six advertising campaigns, each of which we addressed when raised by our customers or by the Commission. We take these allegations seriously and have cooperated with the Commission throughout. We have never deliberately misled our customers."
“Vodafone has a strong track record for innovation in the New Zealand market. We have introduced new technologies, new pricing and opened up entirely new markets over the past 11 years. We have been first to market with offers like pre-pay, text messaging and mobile TV”, says Mark Rushworth, Vodafone’s director of marketing.
“We strive to deliver great value and outcomes for customers. It has always been our practice to work with our customers to continually improve our processes and explanations around our offers.
“This legal action feels to us like using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.”