Samsung was one of the first companies to make water resistance a regular feature of their flagship smartphones, but it turns out the confidence this gave consumers to use their handsets around bodies of water is false, as, according to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), the company regularly “denied warranty claims from consumers whose phones were damaged when used in water.”
What upset the ACCC, in particular, is that Samsung’s advertising in Australia gave the clear impression that the devices were water-safe, with the ACCC believing this contributed significantly to the popularity of the handsets.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission reviewed 300 ads (such as the ones above) and found Samsung made “false, misleading and deceptive representations in advertising the water resistance of various ‘Galaxy’ branded mobile phones”, and was actively advertising water resistance by showing the phones being exposed to swimming pools and the ocean without being affected.
Handsets included in the misleading advertising includes the Galaxy S10e, S10, S10 Plus, S9, S9 Plus, S8, S8 Plus, S7, S7 Edge, Note 9, Note 8, Note 7, A8, A7, and A5.
“Samsung showed the Galaxy phones used in situations they shouldn’t be to attract customers“, said ACCC Chair Rod Sims. The commission is, therefore, taking Samsung to court, seeking penalties, consumer redress orders, injunctions, declarations, publication orders, an order as to findings of fact, and costs, and can imagine consumers who were denied warranty claims would be due for some compensation of the ACCC wins.
Read more about the case here.
Samsung is not the only company who advertises their phones as water resistant and who then refuses claims based on water damage, with Apple guilty of the same practice, using weasel words in their warranty documentation. The actions of the ACCC is long overdue, and will hopefully result in changes in policies in the rest of the world.
Do our readers agree? Let us know below.