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Apple will refund Australian iPad buyers

Watchdog group accused company of misleading consumers about 4G capability

Apple Inc. is apologizing in a big way to its customers down under.

Yesterday, the tech giant announced that it would email all Australian buyers of its newest iPad to offer them a refund after a watchdog group accused it of false advertising.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) accused Apple of misleading customers about the third-generation iPad’s 4G connectivity abilities. The ACCC says Apple advertised that, with a SIM card, the “iPad with WiFi can … connect to a 4G mobile data network in Australia,” which it can’t do due to technical incompatibility. Australia has one 4G network that operates on a different frequency than the 4G on the iPad.

An Australian judge has scheduled a trial for May 2 to determine whether Apple broke Australian consumer laws. The company could face penalties of $1.1 million per violation. 

Ashley Post

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