Dell Challenges Apple's Greenness

Published on June 19, 2009
by Andrew LaVallee

Apple is now calling its MacBook laptops “the world’s greenest lineup of notebooks” instead of “the world’s greenest family of notebooks” in response to a recommendation by the Better Business Bureau’s advertising division.

The division came to the recommendation after rival computer maker Dell (DELL) challenged Apple’s (AAPL) MacBook marketing, which refers, among other things, to the devices’ energy usage, packaging and recyclable components.

Dell’s complaints, according to a report published by the Bureau’s National Advertising Division, include Apple’s reference to its gold ratings by the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool, or EPEAT — ratings Dell said it and other PC makers have also received.

It also pointed out four “pillars” in Apple’s MacBook ads — recyclability, reduced packaging, less toxic materials and increased energy efficiency — and claimed that “Apple must, but does not, establish superiority over all of its competitors in all four pillars to support its broad superiority claim…many competing laptops offer the same characteristics it cites as the basis of superiority (e.g., recyclability).”

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