An investigation by MyBroadband and ISACA member Abu-Huraira Oman Abdalla revealed that a “Full HD” 32-inch Telefunken TV sold at Game featured an HD Ready panel.
When Game was asked about the issue, it said the TV complied with the relevant standards and laws.
“The product is marketed as Full HD, and the TV supports FHD 1080p, and in general terms any Full HD TV is purely dependent on the source media,” said Game.
“The model supports Full HD through HDMI and is dependent on source. There is no claim on native resolution, the unit is sold as a TV and not as a high-end monitor.”
Telefunken referred all questions to its licensee in South Africa, Nu-World.
Nu-World told MyBroadband that “the unit is sold as a TV” and supports Full HD “dependent on source through HDMI”.
“We make no claim to native resolution. Different panels are used from time to time,” said Nu-World.
“Full HD” TV recall
After the article was published, Game’s parent company Massmart stepped in, announcing a recall on the TVs in question.
Massmart’s communications manager Refilwe Boikanyo told MyBroadband that they investigated the matter and gathered information from Nu-World.
“The result is that we have determined that the supplier has incorrectly labelled the product as Full HD, when in fact it should have been labelled HD Ready,” said Boikanyo.
Massmart has quarantined the product and instructed the supplier to alert affected Game customers as part of a product recall.
Feedback from TV manufacturers
MyBroadband has subsequently received several complaints from consumers who alleged that TVs they purchased were also falsely promoted as Full HD.
This raises the question as to what Full HD means to the major manufacturers and what their view is of 720p panels being used in “Full HD” TVs.
Samsung – Our Full HD TVs always have Full HD panels
“A Full HD TV must be able to support 1,920 x 1,080 resolution to be called Full HD. All Samsung Full HD TVs support Full HD and include a Full HD panel inside the TV,” said Mike van Lier, director of consumer electronics at Samsung South Africa.
Van Lier said Samsung endeavours to maintain its brand integrity by promoting accurate product specifications.
“It is good to note that any HD TV can support and accept a Full HD signal. However, your picture quality will be downgraded to HD – 1,360 x 768 – because HD TVs don’t have the pixels required to display Full HD – 1,920 x 1,080.”
Panasonic – All our Full HD TVs have Full HD panels
Panasonic said all its Full HD TVs have Full HD panels with a native resolution of 1,920 x 1,080.
The company said it is unacceptable to promote and describe a TV as Full HD and then use an HD Ready (1,360 x 768) 720p panel in that television.
Hisense – It is totally unacceptable to falsely promote a Full HD TV
Hisense said that all its TVs promoted as Full HD have Full HD panels with a native resolution of 1,920 x 1,080.
The company said it is totally unacceptable for companies to falsely promote and describe a TV as Full HD if it is not.
Update: LG – It is unacceptable to promote a TV as Full HD when it uses an HD Ready panel
LG said all the Full HD TVs it sells and has sold in South Africa all contain Full HD panels with a native resolution of 1,920 x 1,080.
It added that it is “unacceptable to promote and describe a TV as Full HD and then use an HD Ready (1,360 x 768) 720p panel in that television”.