Dell has come under fire for failing to include an essential printer cable in one of its PC and printer bundles.
The direct PC giant came unstuck over a newspaper insert advertising various laptops, hard drive, monitor and accessories packages, including the Dell Photo All-in-One Printer 926.
Text underneath the prices stated 'Incl. VAT & Shipping', but a reader challenged whether the ad should have stated that an essential cable to connect the printer with the PC was not included in the price.
Dell said that the company does not supply cables as standard with printers because it believes that purchasers are likely to possess one already and would not necessarily need or want a new one.
The firm added that it did not believe the ad gave the impression that a cable was included but that, if a customer needed one, they had the opportunity to purchase one when they ordered a printer.
The complaint was taken to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which agreed that the £14 cable should have been included.
"We noted that it was essential to have a cable to use the printer and that a cable was likely to cost approximately £14. We considered that this was a significant cost in relation to the price of the printer," the ASA ruling stated.
"We considered that the ad gave the impression that the printer could be used in conjunction with a computer without the purchase of any further equipment, and that the natural expectation among customers was that a cable would be included in the advertised price unless the ad specifically stated that it was not."
The watchdog has told Dell to ensure that its ads state that cables are not included in the advertised prices for printers in future, if this is the case.
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