Optus 'unlimited' claims land it in court

Optus 'unlimited' claims land it in court

Summary: The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has instituted legal proceedings against Optus for wrongly advertising "unlimited" calls.

SHARE:

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has instituted legal proceedings against Optus for wrongly advertising "unlimited" calls.

The commission has labelled some of Optus' advertising "misleading or deceptive", as the telco failed to inform consumers of the numerous limitations and restrictions attached to its recently advertised $70 prepaid "Turbo Max" plan.

The ACCC believed Optus' misuse of the word "unlimited" contravenes Section 52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974. Section 52 of the Act states; "A corporation shall not, in trade or commerce, engage in conduct that is misleading or deceptive or is likely to mislead or deceive."

The proceedings also relate to other advertisements, including those for Optus' "unlimited" broadband plans, which offered incentives for customers who chose to bundle home phone, internet and mobile services together.

The ACCC is seeking an acknowledgement by Optus of its deceptive actions, as well as injunctions and costs.

The case will be held in Melbourne's Federal Court on 25 June 2010.

Topics: Telcos, Government, Government AU, Legal, Optus

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

8 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • According to your linked article with the plan structure the only plans that are listed as "unlimited" are the "100GB Unlimited" and "200GB Unlimited" plans, both of which are throttled back to 256k once the the relevent limit is reached. As 256k is classified in Australia as broadband, technically it is an unlimited broadband plan.

    It could be argued that the plans are deceptive, but even though would be hard to prove as all the information is laid out quite clearly in the plan structure with nothing hidden.

    The ACCC must be having a slow day because there is nothing wrong with advertising unlimited broadband if that is what is being provided as per the Australian standard.
    Tezmyster
  • The prepaid was clearly deceiving. It has unlimited* - with *'limited to 3000 minutes'!

    Lunacy. Can't believe they even tried this. Are they trying to make their customers look like idiots?
    sickre
  • TPG and other 'superior' and 'honest' internet service providers have all labelled their deals being limited, even if they cap at speeds at such as 1mbps. Considering that they advertise limitations while having capped options that are up to 4 times faster than what optus provides, it's not only deceptive but also downright insulting.
    Ashmuschialli
  • Don't even get me started on their 30gig unlimited internet plan...
    Ashmuschialli
  • this ain't unlimited!
    optus.com.au/fusion

    'yes' Fusion $109 Unlimited - online only Superfast upto 30GB
    'yes' Fusion $129 Unlimited - online only Superfast upto 50GB
    gotgoogled
  • Same old story for Optus along with their bait & switch tactics.
    Make a deceptive offer to get the customer in then quietly start overcharging & lie when terms are queried. This resulted in my permanently dumping them years ago.
    grump3
  • I would be nice to telcos to come out and be honest and not use complex terms and conditions, or assume by being 'missleading' intentional or not people will forgive and forget...

    A happy customer tells at least 5 others.... lets just focuse of delivering a decent service not so much how much money i can make...

    I call it a bread roll effect... a baker minght not make $100 per sale, however they can make a $5 sale to 100 customers, and have a greter profit margin.
    SimpleIT
  • The Optus "Unlimited Calls" Advertisement has the following footnote:
    "Unlimited calls and SMS to any mobile within Australia"...(and here's the classic bit:)..."up to a maximum of 3,000 minutes(and 3,000 SMS on $100 recharge)"
    Clearly this is a limitation expressly contradicting the unlimited claim. The ACCC is onto a winner here. Particularly given that Optus' court endorsed undertakings last year to the ACCC. Optus: Assume the position!
    vuvuzela-dd8b3