Dish Network Hopper service with free iPad
In this commercial for Dish Network we see “The Hopper” family watching the news and a live police chase on their free iPad from Dish, using The Hopper. This is one in a series of commercials featuring the family and next door neighbor using The Hopper.
(Outside a coffee shop watching the news on an iPad): Oh, you signed up with Dish, huh? Yah, Dish offered me an iPad with The Hopper so I can watch live and recorded TV anywhere.
Look, a live police chase! Looks like they’re being chased by police on horseback (police on horseback run by, chasing the bad guys). The helicopters are homing in on him now. That iPad sure is neat. (bad guy comes back and steals the iPad). What happened to the thing we were watching?
(Announcer): Only Dish offers an iPad with The Hopper so you can watch all your live and recorded TV anywhere.
Claims made in the Dish commercial:
- What the commercial said: Dish offered me an iPad with The Hopper
- What some people might think that means: If I sign up for Dish Network I can get a free iPad
- Can you really get a free iPad from Dish Network?: At the end of the commercial, 22 seconds after this statement is made, the following very small, very difficult to read fine-print is shown:
Offer requires 24 mo. commitment, credit qualification and qualified programming. iPad 2 is 16GB WiFi only. Remote viewing requires WiFi connection or use of Hopper Transfers app. Limited time offer. Restrictions apply including early cancellation fee.
According to the fine print shown, to get the free iPad you must agree to a 2 year contract, you must pass a credit check, and buy specific/”qualified” programming packages. However if you pass the credit check and agree to these terms, there is no extra cost for the free iPad according to the fine print.
- What the guy in the commercial said: (The Guy) I can watch live and recorded TV anywhere / (announcer) you can watch all your live and recorded TV anywhere
- What some people might think that means: If I sign up for Dish Network and get The Hopper service I can use my free iPad to watch live or recorded TV anywhere
- Is it true?: When this statement is made, and again at the end of the commercial, the following fine print is shown:
iPad 2 is 16GB WiFi only
“WIFI only” means that the iPad does not have a cellular or “3G” type service. In order to connect to the internet to watch live TV on the iPad with The Hopper, the iPad must be connected to a “WiFi” or wireless internet service. This type of internet connection is common at most restaurants, coffee shops, etc and probably explains why they are shown watching TV on their iPad outside of a coffee shop in the commercial. However, since WiFi signals only have a range of a few hundred feet, and because wifi is not available everywhere, it would be impossible to to watch live TV “anywhere” as claimed in the commercial.
This commercial makes two claims: 1) You can get an iPad and 2) You can watch live or recorded TV anywhere with the iPad. It is true that you can get an iPad for no additional cost but it is not true that you “watch live TV anywhere” with the iPad. Most people would consider this to not only be deceptive, but, an outright untruth.