South Africa: ASA dismisses MTN case against Vodacom
21 July 2017
The Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa (ASA) has dismissed a complaint from MTN against Vodacom's "South Africa’s Best Network" claim. Vodacom based its claim on MyBroadband’s speed test data, which shows that it outperformed MTN, Cell C, and Telkom on average download speeds, reports Mybroadband. MTN's complaint argued that Ookla’s speed test data shows its mobile speeds are on a par with Vodacom’s, negating Vodacom’s network superiority claim.
MTN added that Vodacom should not be allowed to use MyBroadband's speed test results to substantiate its claim. Vodacom’s claims should be supported by Ookla data, rather than MyBroadband data, failing which, the claim would not only be unsubstantiated, but misleading, said MTN.
MTN has previously used MyBroadband speed test data in its advertisements. Vodacom has retorted that MyBroadband and Ookla use similar testing methodologies, run their software on the same smartphones, and collect the same network performance metrics. Vodacom said MyBroadband's statistics are valid and representative, and its sample size and level of statistical significance justify the conclusions reached.
A third-party report by Catalyst Research & Strategy, a SAMRA-accredited entity, showed that MyBroadband's speed test results were accurate and in line with industry standards. The ASA dismissed MTN's argument that MyBroadband's data should not be used to make mobile network claims. The ASA said Vodacom’s "SA’s Best Network" claim is therefore justified when using MyBroadband's speed test results. Therefore, the ASA dismissed MTN’s complaint.