BT Infinity ad banned for misleading consumers

BT has been scolded by the Advertising Standards Authority [ASA] over an advert that made misleading claims about the speed of its fibre optic broadband service.

The ad claimed that BT Infinity was eight times faster than the UK average and sees two students helping a housemate get a date by using BT Infinity broadband to upload a photo and buy concert tickets.

The first complaint was that the data used in the ad wasn’t based on the latest Ofcom figures and was thus misleading as a result. Another four complainants challenged the speed of the photo upload that takes place, as well as the rapid speed at which the ticket purchase is completed. The latter complainants stated the ad was “misleading and exaggerated the performance of BT Infinity”.

BT’s response to the first complaint was that at the time the ad was produced the claims “were based on the most up-to-date report”. When it came to the second complaint they didn’t think the ad was misleading as the photo being uploaded was the speed that can be expected.

The ASA didn’t agree and stated that BT hadn’t informed its consumers the data was out of date and they had been misled as a result. BT’s ad now cannot be broadcast in its current form.

BT Infinity offers fibre-optic broadband to UK consumers and claims to deliver download speeds of up to 76mbps and upload speeds of 19mbps, depending on the level of package chosen.

The firm recently decided to break up its BT retail business into BT Business and BT Consumer with the latter now responsible for delivering BT Infinity to consumers.