Sony forced to offer Vita refunds due to misleading ads

Written by David Hing

November 26, 2014 // 12:45 p.m.

Tags: #ads #killzone-3 #ps-vita

Companies: #ftc #sony

Sony has been ordered to refund PS Vita customers who bought a Vita in North America before June 1 2012 with refunds due to an ad campaign the company launched which the FTC considers misleading.

The FTC took exception to claims made in the offending ads including the highlighting of remote play and cross save functionality. The FTC highlights that the remote play was not as supported as the ad suggested and that for cross saving to work, customers had to own two copies of the game, something that the ad neglected to mention.

’Customers really couldn’t use remote play to run most PS3 games on the PS Vita, not even Killzone 3, the popular PS3 game Sony featured in its promotional video explaining remote play,’ said FTC consumer education specialist Bridget Small.

The ad also implied that the 3G version of the Vita had greater multiplayer functionality than existed on the device.

Anyone eligible for the refund will be contacted by email and the refunds take the form of either $25 in cash or a $50 merchandise voucher.

As well as going after Sony, the FTC also issued a warning to Sony’s ad agency Deutsch which the commission states should have known that the PS Vita did not work as advertised. It also picked up on the fact that Deutsch had employees tweet about the PS Vita from personal Twitter accounts without saying they worked for an ad agency engaged by Sony.

As well as being forced to issue refunds, the terms of the settlement stop Sony from making ‘similarly misleading advertising claims’ in the future.
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