Apple to pay $2.25 million in Australia over misleading iPad 4G branding

By on June 8, 2012, 11:00 AM

Apple has agreed to pay a settlement of $2.25 million in Australia over accusations that it mislead customers by promoting the 4G capabilities of the new iPad, despite knowing that the tablet did not support LTE networks in the country. The issue was first brought up in March by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) who accused Apple of breaching consumer laws.

Apple’s iPad uses the 700MHz and 2100MHz frequency bands for LTE connectivity, but Australia’s sole LTE network run by Telstra operates on the 1800MHz band.

After some back and forth between Apple and the Australian consumer watchdog, Apple eventually altered its marketing around the world to lessen the confusion, renaming the tablet model in question as "iPad + Cellular”. It also offered  refunds to unhappy customers.

The company was able to dodge a potential injunction in Australia but it’ll still have to pay the $2.25 million penalty to the ACCC — down from a maximum of $4.4 million — as well as an additional $300,000 to cover the organization’s court costs. The proposed settlement, submitted to the Federal Court in Melbourne on Friday, must be approved by the court first but no timetable has been set.

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