Apple’s latest batch of adverts have managed to hack almost everyone off by depicting their fanboys as idiots who can’t tie their own shoelaces without help from one of their geniuses.
They also depict fanboys buying whatever they are told to without engaging their brain.
As a general rule, Apple marketing is the best in the world. Only Jobs’ Mob could, at the time, convince the world that a keyboardless netbook – which had not worked for Microsoft – or an MP3 player – which had not really worked for Sandisk – was a good idea. But it always has trouble with Apple users in its adverts appearing as smug or without perspective.
One of the new adverts shows a man waking up an Apple Genius in the early hours because his wife is having a baby and he wants to film the whole event. An Apple customer, this advert suggests, is more concerned about getting his Mac to work and needs guiding to the hospital by the genius. We get it. But we would have thought that after that lack of perspective a divorce would be pending.
The adverts also damage Apple’s MFI (Made For Idiots) image. Apple trades on the idea it just works and any user can work out how to achieve wonderful things. In these adverts, its users need to get in touch with a genius to make it all work.
Now, we know that Apple is trying to be funny, but really it is not the sort of humour that works with Apple. It is supremely patronising of its customers who it really does see as idiots.
US tech website The Verge moaned that the adverts were intellectually cheap and it could not understand how they got approval.
Even Apple apologist John Gruber admitted that the the adverts were not cool but that was because they were not targeted at existing Mac users. Essentially, these adverts are for the technologically unsavvy, who are at danger of increasingly edging towards rival hardware that is open and can outclass Apple.
Not owning a Mac, and seeing the sort of universe that Apple wants me to buy into, where a Blueshirt has to assist in the everyday, I could not imagine a more Orwellian nightmare. Which is a little ironic.