A website for Apple iPhone Unlock, www.appleiphoneunlock.uk, seen 13 March 2019, included a web page with the heading “iCloud® Activation Lock™ removal” which stated “We can resolve this issue in under 72 hours - from £19.99”, “Simply use our iCloud Activation Lock Removal Service” and “The Activation Lock is permanently removed and the device is removed from the previous owners iCloud account allowing you to activate and set up the device as normal”.
The complainant, who was asked to pay two additional fees for the service, challenged whether the quoted “from” price was misleading.
appleiphoneunlock.uk acknowledged the complaint, but did not submit a substantive response to the ASA’s enquiries.
The ASA was concerned by appleiphoneunlock.uk’s lack of substantive response and apparent disregard for the Code, which was a breach of CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 1.7 (Unreasonable delay). We reminded them of their responsibility to provide a substantive response to our enquiries and told them to do so in the future.
The ASA considered consumers would understand the claim “from £19.99” to mean that in a significant proportion of instances the “iCloud® Activation Lock™ removal” service would be provided for £19.99 and that no additional fees would be charged. We understood that in the complainant’s experience they were asked to pay additional sums totalling £129.99 to complete the service. We were not provided with any evidence that appleiphoneunlock.uk provided the service for £19.99 or which confirmed the frequency with which additional fees would be charged. We therefore concluded that the pricing claim had not been substantiated and was therefore misleading.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.17, 3.18, 3.19 and 3.22 (Prices).
The ad must not appear again in the form complained about. We told appleiphoneunlock.uk that quoted prices must include non-optional fees that apply to all or most buyers. We referred the matter to the CAP Compliance team.