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Samsung stirs controversy over Apple ban at Olympics

Publication Date : 10-02-2014


A controversy is heating up surrounding claims that Samsung demanded athletes to cover up their non-Samsung electronic products such as Apple’s iPhones during the Sochi Winter Olympics.

Samsung, a major Olympic sponsor, has allegedly set a condition for athletes receiving gift bags with Samsung’s Galaxy Note 3 smartphones: to physically hide all Apple’s logos if they are using products such as iPhones during the opening ceremony of the games.

Details of the clamp-down, which is said to require that the Apple logo on an iPhone be physically covered so that it’s not caught on camera during the televised ceremony in Sochi, were spilled by the Swiss Olympic team.

The athletes reportedly said they were pleased to find Samsung’s Note 3 phones in their goodie bags, but were afterwards surprised to learn of the catch in the conditions in return for the favour.

The rule only appeared to apply to athletes attending the opening ceremony.

Following such reports, Olympic participants and bloggers raised the issue saying that its discriminatory move was highly inappropriate and was against the spirit of the Olympics, although Samsung denied it.

Samsung Electronics and Apple are currently still embroiled in a multibillion lawsuit over patent infringment, with the ruling in the US pending.


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