Texas sues Google over local radio ads for its smartphones

Google Location Tracking Lawsuit
Posted at 5:38 PM, Jan 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-19 18:38:41-05

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas’ attorney general on Wednesday sued Google, alleging the company asked local radio DJs to record personal endorsements for smartphones that they hadn’t used or been provided.

In the lawsuit filed in Montgomery County, Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton said Google engaged in false and misleading practices in violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices—Consumer Protection Act.

The lawsuit says Google hired iHeartMedia in October 2019 to have its radio personalities — including those in markets in the Dallas and Houston areas — record advertisements for the Pixel 4, a Google-brand smartphone.

But at the time the advertisements were recorded, the lawsuit says, the phone wasn’t released yet and none of the DJs had used them. The suit says that even though iHeartMedia “expressed to Google the violative nature of the advertisements” if the DJs had not used them, Google did not provide phone samples.