"There was a time when Apple advertised itself as a challenge to the mainstream," says Slate. Now "companies are using [that same strategy] against Apple." Take the newly revealed teaser for Samsung's Galaxy S III smartphone, for instance. Glittery shots of stars and far-off galaxies accompany floating text that makes ambitious promises about the handset's "truly smart technology." (Watch the video below.) The ad — which comes just a week before Samsung's secretive May 3 event where the phone will reportedly be unveiled — concludes with something that seems like it was plucked right from Apple's playbook: A shot of a flock of bleating sheep, overlayed with text promising that Galaxy S III owners will "now stand out from everyone else." In other words, take that, Apple. Is the borrowed strategy working for Samsung?
People will watch the ad, but it's still awful: "The best way to get someone to spread your dumb video is to include something controversial," says Matt Burns at TechCrunch. That's "Viral YouTube Marketing 101." But calling iPhone users sheep? Not really funny, and it's disappointing that the "lame jab is the high point of an otherwise humdrum" ad. "This might be the worst teaser in the history of teasers."
"Wake up, sheeple: Samsung hypes next Galaxy S smartphone"
Taking shots at Apple works for Samsung: "Kicking the beehive has its benefits," says Jason Gilbert at The Huffington Post. Remember how Samsung pushed "an entire series of TV commercials around bashing Apple fans who waited in line outside stores for new Apple products?" Though this ad doesn't offer any details about the phone itself, it's creating a lot of "tech blog chatter," which in turn reaches a lot of consumer eyeballs. Apple mockery works — just look at how well the company's smartphone/tablet hybrid the Samsung Note sold.
"'Galaxy S III' teaser: Samsung mocks iPhone 'sheeple'"
Let's hope the actual phone isn't a letdown: "Oh, Samsung," says Mark Raby at Slashgear. "The cryptic teases about the company's next generation Galaxy device just keep on coming." The Korean manufacturer appears so bored in the lead up to its May 3 media event that it's looking "like that overeager gift-giver before Christmas who keeps dropping hints about what he bought." At this point, "we really hope the Samsung Galaxy S III lives up to the hype."
"New Samsung Galaxy S III trailer boasts powerful technology… and sheep"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The mystery behind China's aggressive push into space
- The best places to find love — and lust — according to science
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- How a drafting error could doom Obama's carbon regulations
- Sex can't explain the culture war
- Why GOP reformers are bound to fail
- How the battle for religious freedom became a nonsensical free-for-all
- Boyhood's refreshingly unsentimental take on motherhood
- This simple hack for slicing cherry tomatoes will astound you
Subscribe to the Week