New Microsoft ad takes another shot at Apple

Sat, Apr 4, 2009


Microsoft recently released another ad in its “Laptop Hunter” series where they follow individuals looking for a computer with certain specifications.  If they can find it for under a certain price, Microsoft foots the bill. Wow, I wonder if Sony has a similar deal for their LCD TV’s?

In Microsoft’s latest ad, we meet Giampaolo, a dashing young fellow looking for a powerful laptop for under $1500.  He ends up at Fry’s where he decides to check out some Macs.  Upon examining what seems to be a Macbook he remarks, “This is soo Sexy.”  But it’s not love at first sight for Giampolo as he goes on to take a few jabs at Apple.

But Macs to me are about aesthetics more than they are about the computing power.  I don’t want to pay for the brand, I want to pay for the computer.

Hmm, makes you wonder why he even checked out the Macs in the first place.  Giampaolo, who’s a recent engineering grad, eventually ends up purchasing an HP HDX 16.

Giampaolo’s statements echo recent sentiments from Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer where he said that consumers don’t want to pay $500 more for a logo in tough economic times.

Are Microsoft’s new commercials effective?

These commercials are admittedly entertaining, but they fail to adequately address the real reasons users decide to switch to the Mac.  Microsoft still can’t come to grips with the fact that people aren’t buying Apple products to be “cool”, but rather because they deem the OS and user experience worthy of a premium. It’s not about the logo, it’s about the quality that the logo has come to represent. If Microsoft truly believes that people buy Apple products for the logo, how can they honestly expect their own products to compete when they’re not even taking competitors seriously. I mean, it’s easy to dismiss the iPhone and the Mac, for example, if you think its advantages are minimal, and its success simply the result of some fad.

When will Microsoft learn that this ridiculous notion of “coolness” barely drives any significant sales at all. There’s a distinct difference between buying a product that you think is cool, and buying a product because you think it will make you cool.  People buy Macs because they can do cool things with them straight out of the box, not because they think they’ll all of a sudden become popular and respected in their social circle.

If Microsoft wants to get people excited about using Windows, it needs to spend more time focusing on its own OS, and less time focusing on the notion of the “cool Mac user.”



5 Comments For This Post

  1. PIF Says:

    I get the impression from these two MS ads that people don’t like Macs because they are too light!

    The heavier the pc the better. I think it might be that these kids have never actually done any PE in school, nor one day’s worth of physical labor in their too lame lives. Thus, the need to feel and look ‘cool’ at being able to actually lift a 10 pound pc on a daily basis.

    Basically, those pc users are just the garden variety show-offs.

  2. CHM Says:

    These commercials only reinforce why people are going Mac and not going back. I just switched a month ago. I got a 17-inch MacBook Pro. It took me no time at all to jump into it (less than a week). It’s so freaking light and silent for a computer its size. The keyboard is comfortable for people with fairly large hands, and the wrist rest is large and relatively comfy. I can’t believe how much faster I can accomplish most tasks on it. The only sticking point is that Adobe hasn’t done enough testing with CS4 on a Mac to make it truly stable.

    I sometimes have to run Windows through Fusion, and it hurts my soul to see that pixelated “Microsoft” logo pop up above the “MacBook Pro” label. The fastest consumer Windows computer can’t cut out the time it takes to get through the start menu to accomplish the most ridiculous of tasks that OS X handles with ease. And, to be honest, the Mac can compete head on in BootCamp with most other laptops running Vista. But you’ll be looking for every possible program to avoid needing to boot that crap.

  3. J Alexander crough Says:

    I’m pretty sure that guy that’s “Tech Savvy” just said that a computer had a “two gigabyte” processor.

  4. J Alexander crough Says:

    Ahh, after watching it again, he didn’t/

  5. keaura Says:

    So what happens after Giampaolo gets home with his new HP and discovers the difficulties of getting connected to the internet? Or what happens when Giampaolo looks his machine over and discovers there is no email client or even a calendar? That if they are present they are really trial software that he’ll have to purchase.

    When all is said and done, he’ll have wound up spending nearly as much $ on the PC to get it to be functionally equivalent to a Mac, not to mention the time and heartache it took to get there.

    Apple should do a commercial where one person buys a Mac and another person buys a PC (perhaps college roommates). They set them up side by side and compare experiences getting onto the internet and writing an email or doing a chat. Then, follow up 6 months later and see who is really happy with their purchase and how the machines are doing – which one has had a virus attack, which one has been mysteriously slowing down, how many times each as locked up and had to be rebooted, and so forth.

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