Huawei is attempting to break into the U.S. smartphone market with its Mate 10 Pro flagship, but the move isn’t without its problems. Huawei decided to drum up positive word-of-mouth for the device through glowing reviews online, only these customers never actually used the phone.
First reported by 9to5Google, the whole ordeal was a part of a beta tester program Huawei pushed out on Facebook. It asked members of a group to go to Best Buy’s review section and state why they wanted to test out the Mate 10 Pro. The winners would receive a Mate 10 Pro device to beta test.
Offering a device to test out is not against the rules, but it is when you ask the users to go to a comment section and spam it with fake positive reviews.
It’s false advertising, for one, leading users who have never used a product before to write a positive review and post a five-star rating. And it is against Best Buy’s review section policy. You can’t put a form of advertising in a review section. It’s a policy for Best Buy and nearly every other online retailer.
To an undiscerning user, seeing the five-star rating of the Mate 10 Pro on Best Buy would entice them to buy the phone. That was Huawei’s end goal all along—push potential customers to buy its phone.
Once the Facebook post started to get attention, Huawei deleted it. Now that news of Huawei’s tactics is out, it has to deal with the downfall.