Feb 07, 2014 at 04:30 PM
written by Staff

What You Won't See At Today's Opening Ceremonies

iPhones. At least that's the rumor that's been floating around the past couple of days. Samsung reportedly asked that athletes (who were all given a Samsung Galaxy 3 as part of the company's sponsorship activation) not bring their competitor's phones to today's/tonight's opening ceremonies or if they must, cover up the apple logo. All of which kind of makes sense, what with Samsung shelling out around $100M to sponsor the games, but the ensuing avalanche of media buzz means the company may (emphasis) have effectively ambushed itself by creating a whole lot of unpaid media for its chief competitor.

For their part, both Samsung and the IOC deny reports that this request of athletes was ever made.

Samsung says (via Fast Company)...

Samsung has not been involved in any decisions related to branding on products used by athletes to the Games. All commercial marketing around the Games is overseen by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

The IOC press office responded via The Gaurdian)...

It is not true. Athletes can use any device they wish during the Opening Ceremony. The normal rules apply just as per previous games. The Samsung Note 3 that were distributed are a gift to the athletes, so they can capture and share their experiences at the games, and the phones also contain important competition and logistical information for competing athletes.