Eric Clapton feeling wonderful tonight with T-Mobile smartphone

Posted on Mon Jan 25 2010

T-Mobile has unveiled the phone you've been waiting for: the Eric Clapton myTouch 3G Fender Limited Edition smartphone. What, you like the iPhone? If you're a diehard Clapton fan, you'll much prefer the myTouch, created in partnership with the legendary musician and Fender guitarist. Supported by Google's Android platform, the phone comes preloaded with Clapton classics like "Layla," "My Father's Eyes," "Rock 'n' Roll Heart" and "Wonderful Tonight." Clapton even stars in the commercial. As an added bonus, T-Mobile has also preloaded songs from Wyclef Jean, Avril Lavigne and Brad Paisley. The collection of musicians sure is eclectic, but you can't blame T-Mobile for trying to target practically every music genre. It's a cutthroat time for cell-phone providers.

—Posted by Elena Malykhina

Cox Wireless plays gotcha with rival carriers in Doner campaign

Posted on Tue Jan 19 2010

Crispin Porter + Bogusky's influence seems clear in this latest ad from Doner for Cox Wireless. In particular, it reminds me of the Whopper Freakout. But while Burger King was punking its own customers in those ads, here Cox takes aim at the Other Leading Brand, here called "Your Wireless." In the ads, purported real customers visit a mall kiosk, where a sales rep spells out her company's plan in an unusually frank manner, noting that the $19 a month plan will actually be more like "$69-ish" after you add in all the hidden fees. "The reason we charge $19 is so we can make a ton of money in overages," she says at one point, illustrating that sometimes transparency isn't such a great thing. The ads pave the way for an "unbelievably fair" offer from Cox coming in March. Bashing competitors, is, of course, nothing new in the wireless segment. In fact, it's the norm. The danger is that viewers at home will forget who's bashing whom and just tune out.

—Posted by Todd Wasserman

Google's new Nexus One phone gets all up in the iPhone's grill

Posted on Fri Jan 8 2010

Google this week announced the launch of its über-cool smartphone called Nexus One, which promises the ultimate Web experience on a phone. A commercial for the new device shows off its features to a spacey tune that plays in the background. Clearly, Nexus is being positioned as an iPhone rival, from its Web capabilities to its actual design. But any ad challenging the iPhone deserves a good spoof, like the one posted here, by Landline TV. In the foul-mouthed video, Nexus is appropriately renamed the "Fuck You iPhone," allowing you to "text asses to iPhone users," use "audio neutralization" to block blabbing iPhoners, and turn on the "optimized urination interface" to "fuck with any iPhone's shit." The Google phone is so good, it will also invite itself over to your house, prank order 20 pizzas and steal your girlfriend. Hey, don't make that face! I didn't make this stuff up.

—Posted by Elena Malykhina

Verizon Droid escalates its war on the iPhone by calling it a sissy

Posted on Fri Dec 4 2009

Since its introduction last month, the Droid, a Motorola phone available via Verizon Wireless, has come out swinging. The first ads, from mcgarrybowen, went after the iPhone by noting a series of things the hip Apple gadget doesn't do, like run multiple apps simultaneously or mow your lawn. But the latest Droid ad hits below the belt by accusing the iPhone of being (gulp) a sissy phone. "Should a phone be pretty?" it asks. "Should it be a tiara-wearing, digitally clueless beauty queen?" (To get the point across, the ad employs a visual of a tiara-wearing beauty-queen doll.) Casting the idea of prettiness aside, the Droid is presented as a phone that "rips through the Web like a circular saw through a ripe banana." Hey, Steve, it's on. I haven't seen a brand go after another's masculinity like this since Budweiser's infamous "Queen of Carbs" attack on SABMiller in 2004.

—Posted by Todd Wasserman

It's Apple's turn to strike back at that scoundrel Verizon Wireless

Posted on Tue Nov 24 2009

It seems Verizon Wireless is getting to everyone. Last week, a federal judge said the carrier can continue to run its "There's a map for that" takeoff of Apple's "There's an app for that" spots, thus delivering a setback to AT&T, the iPhone's exclusive U.S. carrier. AT&T had sued Verizon over the campaign, which compares coverage maps and claims Verizon has five times more coverage than AT&T. Now, it's Apple's turn to take a jab at Verizon. In its new round of iPhone ads, Apple deftly illustrates various apps and then ends with: "Can your phone and your network do that?" But don't miss the fine print at the end of the commercial: "3G not available in all areas."

—Posted by Noreen O'Leary

Luke Wilson and AT&T say ignore that meany Verizon Wireless

Posted on Fri Nov 20 2009

In the latest chapter of the war between wireless carriers, AT&T has released this ad claiming it offers a better 3G experience than Verizon Wireless. The two carriers have been batting for weeks over allegedly misleading ads. On Nov. 4, AT&T filed a lawsuit against Verizon, claiming that the latter's "There's a map for that" TV spot wrongfully portrayed AT&T as having weaker 3G coverage. Verizon's rep had a lot to say about the matter, calling it "a junk lawsuit." And just this week, Verizon filed a motion in a U.S. District Court contending that AT&T is unhappy with Verizon's ads because they're true. I didn't think we'd see it so soon, but here it is—AT&T's ad attacking Verizon. The carrier hired Luke Wilson to convince consumers that AT&T is the superior wireless provider. Sure, he's a celebrity, and he uses a shiny magnetic check-off list to make his point. But I think I speak for all consumers when I say the carriers should stop spending money on attack ads and spend it on improving their service instead. Sorry for the cliché, folks, but actions do speak louder than words.

—Posted by Elena Malykhina

Santa surrounded by asses in latest Boost Mobile 'Unwrong'd' ad

Posted on Tue Nov 17 2009

Boost Mobile's "Unwrong'd" campaign has already delved into "wrong" topics like women with excessive armpit hair and a "man baby." So, naturally, it's moved on to Santa Claus. In this ad, Santa has had to cut back because of his high cell-phone rates. Instead of reindeer, he's using mules, and the North Pole factory equipment seems to be faulty. What's more, there's a giant elf, territory that Will Ferrell has already colonized. Considering all the "wrong" places that Boost and agency 180LA could have gone with Santa, this is pretty mild stuff.

—Posted by Todd Wasserman

Samsung develops new mobile OS, whether you want one or not

Posted on Wed Nov 11 2009

Make way for yet another smartphone operating system. Samsung is the latest company to jump into the mobile OS fray, launching "Bada" in handsets coming out in the first half of 2010. The world's largest seller of mobile phones will go up against popular platforms from Apple and Google Android, which Samsung has already introduced in a Galaxy model, still largely unavailable in America. (Most of Samsung's smartphones use Windows Mobile.) So, why does the Korean giant want another operating system? Apps. Samsung doesn't share in any of the sales through others' app stores. In its announcement about the new OS, the company gushes that Bada, Korean for "ocean," is a new addition to Samsung's "mobile ecosystem (that) enables developers to create applications for millions of new Samsung mobile phones."

—Posted by Noreen O'Leary

Motorola finds a nice, cozy place inside Facebook status updates

Posted on Thu Nov 5 2009


David Armano posted an alert on his Posterous blog this week that Motorola has somehow been getting into Facebook streams. He noticed the cell phone maker's logo appearing next to some status updates. After looking around, I found a Motorola page on Facebook, rich in fans and various elements touting Motoblur, a new service from Motorola that the company claims "puts everything you're into at your fingertips." The service, available on the Andoid-based CLIQ smartphone, is in essence a unified inbox for texts, e-mails and messages from Facebook, MySpace and Twitter. Motorola told me that the small Motorola logo appears when consumers use Motoblur to update Facebook from their CLIQ phones. Given the social nature of Motoblur, it's no surprise the phone maker is using a social network to get buzz going. It's proof that we're more connected than ever, and that we can't escape brand advertising, not even in our private, and yet very public, digital world.

—Posted by Elena Malykhina

They sure make smart phones look real purty in ads these days

Posted on Mon Nov 2 2009

Are smart phones the new cars? A couple of new ads from LG and Sony Ericsson feature the kind of fawning beauty shots you usually associate with the auto category. LG's Android-based GW620, for instance, is first shown zipping around in the air, stopping occasionally to show off features like a qwerty keyboard and a camera lens. Occasionally, the device catches the light just right and positively gleams. This (silent) teaser ad for Sony Ericsson's next phone (it doesn't mention a name, but it's due tomorrow) gets pretty much the same treatment: photography that makes it look like it defies gravity and has the ability to catch the light just right. The reality is, however, that most of these smart phones look pretty similar now, and most people would probably prefer a less gleamy phone with solid service and good features over a radiant one that drops calls.

—Posted by Todd Wasserman



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