HTC has been forced to apologise and remove an advert starring Olympic diver Tom Daley, which wrongly suggests its HTC U11 device can be submerged any deeper than one metre.
Smartphones are obviously running out of new and exciting USPs, and the novelty of the phone’s squeezable sides clearly didn’t cut it for the marketing team. What’s happened here is they’ve decided to exaggerate its IP67 waterproof rating a bit.
In hiring British diving’s favourite son to implicate himself in this charade, capturing a plethora of selfies while somersaulting from great heights, HTC slightly contravenes its own usage guidelines.
We don’t think Daley’s at fault here, although Richard Littlejohn of the Daily Mail has no doubt already written up a “Please don’t pretend wet phones is the new normal” thinkpiece in another sad attempt to denigrate the silver medalist’s excellent life. Daley doesn’t need to be told twice to get his kit off, jump off diving boards or take selfies. Those are his three main things, and it’s his prerogative to accept money from anyone asking him to do them.
Can we really blame HTC either? Does it matter they’ve exaggerated how waterproof a phone is? Will the advertising watchdog not rest in its quest for accuracy until they see a once-deified Olympian recovering a handset from a blocked pub urinal?