Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Apple: It's Not About Features, It's About the Experience

Hey, we're going along with a technology theme, huh?

So, Apple recently released a commercial that I found... interesting.

So, let me tell you what I, an Apple guy, think about this commercial.

Eh, not feeling it.

Don't get me wrong, the Do Not Disturb feature is great and acts just like the commercial says. But I kind of had the reaction that @TehDeminz had when he Tweeted me and said "... So their selling point for that commercial is a glorified snooze button, and they used ping pong to do it? #wat". Like I said, it's a good feature but it's not one of the best prominent features of the iPhone. It seems like Advertising couldn't think of anything more significant to advocate. At least if you're going to advocate this feature, do it with other more significant and impactful features.

(and as a side note, the whole premise of the commercial was just weird. I've never dreamt of two chicks playing ping pong with me, but hey, maybe that's just me)

For example, Apple in the past has done commercials where they focus on a specific type of person. Like this one that focuses on shopping:

Sending pictures or going online with your phone was nothing revolutionary. But being able to figure out a great gift for your wife, cheaply and quickly is what Apple's trying to sell. They're trying to sell an experience instead of above which is a feature. This "feature selling" is apparent in some of their other recent ads as well, such as this one touting noise cancellation:

Noise cancellation is great, but when is the Average Joe going to be drowned out by an orchestra? How about instead, he asks Siri where the nearest Starbucks is and then he goes to get a coffee and pays for it with Passbook. Then while on a bustling city street outside, he gets a call from his wife telling him to meet her at a café (while talking to his wife, the city sounds grow fainter, suggesting noise cancellation). Then using Siri again, he gets directions and using the turn-by-turn navigation in Maps, is able to get to her. I included four features in that commercial, but it wasn't a commercial, it was an experience; a real life scenario. Apple isn't about features, they're about experiences. That's one of the things that makes them so great and different from other technology companies (or at least, usually different). One awesome example is from their competitor, Google.

First of all, you have an adorable child and a mother (+50 points). But, while you see distinct capabilities of the Nexus (e-book reading, 3D gaming, apps, Siri-esque capabilities), that's not the focus or the point of the commercial. The point is that this Nexus is helping a child fuel her curiosity (which, oddly enough is the name of the commercial and the name of the rover that just went to Mars) for space and for reading which is not only cute and adorable to regular people, but is further impactful for moms who now see this device as something that can be beneficial to their child. That's what Google gave to me and to probably many others. Isn't that better than noise-cancellation or a Do Not Disturb Feature?

So basically, I'd like to see more commercials from Apple based around experiences rather than features. And I bet many others would too.

 - Aidan

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