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Dell warned over P4 adverts

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Hardware

The ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) has found Dell guilty of breaking advertising standards with a recent TV ad.

In the broadcast Dell trumpeted its commitment to the Intel Pentium 4 but also highlighted the low cost of its entry level machines, which ran on Celeron processors. A viewer complained the advert was misleading in that non-technical viewers might not be aware the lower price related to a lower performance processor.

The ad in question began 'We'll help you get your ideal PC like this dimension desktop featuring the powerful Intel Pentium 4 processor' and briefly showed a PC on screen. It then showed another PC and claimed 'Other Dell Desktops come with a flat panel monitor and start at just £349'. On-screen text beside the second PC said 'Dell Dimension 2400 with Intel Celeron Processor only £349'. And then, at the end, the voiceover claimed 'Dell PCs use Intel Pentium 4 processors'.

Dell argued that because the advertisement id not say 'All Dell PCs use Intel Pentium 4 processors'.

The ASA ruled that the advertisement breached CAP (Broadcast) TV Advertising Standards Code Rules 5.1 (Misleading advertising), 5.2.2 (Implications) and 5.4.2 (Superimposed text) and Dell was warned off showing it again in the same form.

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