Taiwanese authorities are investigating claims that Samsung smeared HTC online, amid signs that the rivalry between the two Android phone-makers is becoming more and more mired in the black arts of spin and PR.
According to AFP, the Fair Trade Commission is probing Samsung after it received complaints alleging that punters had been paid to write unfavourable reviews of HTC smartphones and tablets.
The students alleged to have been on the payroll also purportedly lauded Samsung gadgets.
If Samsung is found to have breached online advertising regulations it faces a maximum fine of £550,000.
Samsung has yet to officially acknowledge the probe via a statement. However, an update on its Taiwanese division’s Facebook page finds the phone-maker in conciliatory mood, apologising for "any inconvenience and confusion from the internet event".
News of the investigation comes amid signs of worsening relations between the two rivals, with reports claiming that a recent report that Samsung was 'worried' by the glowing reviews meted out to the HTC One alleged to have been planted by HTC’s PR team.
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