MELBOURNE Apple Inc was fined A$2.25 million ($2.29 million) by an Australian court on Thursday for misleading advertising of its latest iPad.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) took legal action against Apple in March, after the computer and gadgets maker rolled out the first wave of new iPad tablets in the Australian market.
The competition watchdog accused Apple of misleading customers with the description of its new iPad, which said it was compatible with a 4G mobile data network when it was not.
The court determined Apple had implied "that an iPad with WiFi + 4G could connect directly to the Telstra LTE mobile data network in Australia, which it could not do," according to the verdict emailed to Reuters by the regulator.
Apple "engaged in conduct that was liable to mislead the public," it said.
A spokeswoman for Apple in Sydney could not be reached immediately for comment on Thursday. Apple has already promised to email all buyers of its new iPad in Australia to offer them a refund and agreed to post warnings that its new iPad "is not compatible with current Australian 4G LTE networks and WiMAX networks."
Telstra Corp's network operates on a different frequency to the 4G on Apple's new iPad.
Apple rolled out the first wave of new iPad tablets on March 16. ($1 = 0.9815 Australian dollars)
(Reporting by Miranda Maxwell; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)