Samsung's commercials are often a mixed bag. Sometimes they stumble on a smart idea and execute it well, other times they get stuck repeating themselves and seeming rather petty about it. Luckily, this latest set of commercials for the Galaxy S7 is in the former category. Because if you're going to suffer through these ads for the next few months, they better be good ones, right?
The first commercial, Why? debuted at the Oscars on Sunday and shows a number of celebrities and people asking why can't their phones have a specific feature. Among them is Wesley Snipes who wants to store all of his movies, Lil' Wayne who'd rather seem reckless pouring champagne on his phone but know it'll survive, James Harden who's grumpy for his late cameo appearance in the video, Doc Rivers who only cares about pick and roll defense, and finally William H.
Google's "Monotune" Android commercial is pretty cool. The musical analogy is interesting (and it ties in well with Google's "be together, not the same" marketing campaign), but there's an impressive technical aspect to it as well. The producers modified a grand piano so that all 88 keys were turned to middle C, so that pianist Ji-Yong Kim could really play the music using a single note. As cool as that commercial is, they might have taken things a bit too far with the latest promotion: an entire album of music played with that one-note piano.
The Galaxy S5 was water-resistant, one of the most hyped features of that particular Samsung generation. The Galaxy S6... wasn't. While the S6 and S6 Edge were huge leaps forward for Samsung in terms of both style and engineering, the loss of water resistance (not to mention expandable storage) was a bummer for some. T-Mobile employee Des would seem to agree, since he took advantage of the Ingress Protection 68 rating on the new Galaxy S7 to unbox the phone underwater. It sure beats the usual blogger's desk, right?
Phone manufacturers are having a harder and harder time getting our attention when it comes to drumming up interest for new releases. LG decided that cheeky marketing would be best when announcing cases and covers for phones that don't officially exist yet. In contrast, Samsung has decided to be just plain baffling. In the "Seven Days of Unboxing" promotion, Samsung lets someone see the new phone (which is almost certainly a Galaxy S7 and/or S7 Edge) for 30 seconds, after which they get to make an artist's interpretation for the audience.
Considering its reliance on many, many balls, Verizon's latest network comparison ad is fairly innocuous. It uses statistics from a Root Metrics study to boast about Verizon's wireless coverage and performance in relation to its competitors AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile. The ad is obviously intended to make Verizon look good, and the combination of a condescending voice-over and an elaborate visualization are particularly disparaging to the cheaper, smaller networks.
The PRIV is BlackBerry's first true Android device. It's something that we, and a considerable portion of die-hard BlackBerry customers, have been looking forward to for a long time. But there are a couple of things that might make potential buyers trepidatious: one, a relatively high price tag of $699, and two, well, it's BlackBerry's first entry on a new software platform. So what are the highlights, aside from the obvious slide-out QWERTY keyboard? BlackBerry would like to show you. The video below is a highlight reel of what makes the PRIV different from other Android flagship phones.
As we know, most smartphone commercials are, at best, OK. Many are less than OK, and some are just downright awful(see also: HTC-RDJ). Apple manages to score a hit every once in a while, but even their ads can come off as corny and contrived (or just boastful) sometimes.
Perhaps the greatest unicorn of all in smartphone advertising is a legitimately chuckle-worthy commercial. They're rare beasts, and even if that chuckle is from a completely WTF place (see: G Flex, ad sadly taken down), a laugh is a positive reaction. Usually. Anyway, Motorola made this new commercial for the Moto G and we all thought it was pretty funny.
Do you remember that kid in high school that really wanted to be popular? He wasn't as athletically gifted or as attractive as his friends, and, even with his expensive clothes and his designer (Gorilla) glasses, he just didn't get the attention and respect he felt he deserved. So, what does this guy do to get noticed? He becomes the class clown, the funny guy - Mr. Giggles. Now, a good sense of humor is a perfectly legitimate way to gain social standing and win friends so what's the problem with that? The problem is that this kid's sense of humor is just a little off and his jokes are either not funny, or distastefully inappropriate.
Google's animated commercials filled with dozens of avatars from the Androidify app are always fun to watch. The latest ad specifically targets the booming smartphone market in India, by showing off the Android One series of low-cost devices and highlighting their recent upgrade to Lollipop 5.1. (Breathe it in, One owners: you get 5.1 before the Nexus 9.) The new ad was posted to Google India's YouTube page this morning.
The commercial is pretty basic, following the formula from previous entries in the series: start off slow, rude interruption, rock out. A few minutes of incompetent transliteration on Google tells me that the song is a more poppy version of "Koi Yahan Aha Nache Nache" from the 1982 Bollywood movie Disco Dancer.