Sony will be refunding a large portion of their customers after their “game changing” description of their PS Vita devices in ads leading up to the launch of the device.
Sony is finally making good on something that many customers found outrageous for a long period of time, before the settlement finally came around. The allegations against the company suggest that they misled customers leading up to, and around the time of the launch of the PlayStation Vita handheld console. Now though, Sony won’t be fighting those claims any longer and will be offering a $25 refund or a $50 voucher, according to the FTC.
The misleading portion of the advertising stemmed from the fact that Sony claimed things that ultimately were not possible. The major mark against the company was the fact that they repeatedly laid claim to the notion that players would be able to move from playing on the PlayStation 3 and then to the Vita. In the process, the claim was that they would not lose any progress in the game and that they would be able to move directly from console-to-console. Another misleading claim was that Sony said those who bought the 3G version would be able to play in a multiplayer mode, but at the end of the day – that just wasn’t the case.
The advertising company that worked with Sony on the PS Vita, or Deutsch LA as its known, also pushed its employees to promote the PlayStation Vita, and ultimately praise the device, but to do so without actually letting their Twitter followers know that they had affiliation with the company, and ultimately PlayStation as well.
Jessica Rich the director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, noted in a statement that “As we enter the year’s biggest shopping period, companies need to be reminded that if they make product promises to consumers – as Sony did with the ‘game changing’ features of its PS Vita – they must deliver on those pledges.”
She went on to note that “The FTC will not hesitate to act on behalf of consumers when companies or advertisers make false product claims.” Sony is just the first of potentially many companies that will be facing a more strict, and fierce fight against them to ensure that proper procedures are carried out and a respectable advertising campaign is waged at all times from these large companies.
Recently, a federal judge approved Apple’s payment to customers related to charges that claimed the company had violated several antitrust laws and allowed the company to work with publishers specifically to raise prices. This was something that gained a lot of criticism, and something that shows the trend that has been occurring throughout the recent months. Sony though has been going through some interesting problems of their own recently as Sony Pictures was forced to shut down computers and reevaluate their security situation as data was literally held at ransom by a group that called themselves #GOP.