Olympic athletes may use Apple devices during opening ceremony after all

iPhone 5s (gold, iSight camera 001)

Cody ran an interesting story yesterday about Samsung allegedly requiring Olympians to cover the Apple logos on their iPhones and iPads during the opening ceremony, as part of giving free devices to athletes. It had all the elements you’d expect from a typical viral story: a pair of tech titans who hate each other’s guts out, a major sports event, greed, ad money and corporate jealousy.

Too bad it wasn’t true. It’s been confirmed by both Samsung and the International Olympic Committee today that athletes are absolutely allowed to use any device they wish during the Opening Ceremonies. This means iPhones and yes – the Apple logos are allowed, too!

A Samsung representative told the media today that Samsung “has not been involved in any decisions related to branding on products used by athletes at the Games.”

All commercial marketing around the games is overseen by the International Olympic  (IOC) Committee,” the company said. The Swiss team also said the story was not true and denied being told to cover the Apple logos on their iPhones.


The original story claimed Samsung had asked athletes to cover the logos on rival devices as a condition for receiving a free Galaxy Note 3 smartphone in the gift bags given to all athletes.

MacRumors got in touch with IOC and a spokesperson debunked that story, saying it was “not true”.

No 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.

There you have it – that’s how easy it is to spread FUD on the Internet these days.

By the way, NBC reported about Galaxy phones being remotely compromised by malware at the Sochi Olympics.