jesse
@ May 7, 2009


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The spot: A precocious young boy and his mother go laptop shopping at Best Buy. The voice-over tells us they are looking for something with "speed, a big hard drive, and a good gaming computer." If they find what they want for under $1500, they can keep it. They look at some PCs. Then they go over to the Mac section, where Mom exclaims, "Whoa, these are way more money, dude!" The boy comments that they are "a little too small", although Mom admits that "they are pretty." The boy concludes: "Maybe we'd rather go PC." Eventually, the boy and his mom settle on a Sony VAIO laptop. At the end, they are handed a wad of cash to go with it, presumably all the money they saved by not purchasing a Mac.


And with that, Microsoft unveils its newest rallying cry: "By a PC, because, while they may be cheap pieces of crap, its a recession and you can't afford anything nicer."

I am a little late to this party. This series of ads, which is called "Laptop Hunters", has already been mercilessly ridiculed and lampooned throughout the internets.  The series started with Lauren purchasing an HP Pavilion ("Lauren" was later outed as an actress) and Giampaolo HP HDX (who was later outed by me as looking like a douchebag).

Others have ably pointed out that the computers purchased in these spots are actually terrible, terrible machines, and that Macs are not actually very expensive when compared to PCs that have similar hardware. Instead, the reason that Macs seem expensive is because they don't sell low end machines to compete in the $500-$1000 laptop market. So I'm not going to harp on any of these points. Instead, I need to ask: are these ads at all convincing?

So far we have an actress, a douchebag, and an 11-year-old boy and his mom deciding that a PC is the way to go. WELL, NO SHIT. PCs still dominate the market for computers over Macs. Obviously there is a whole world full of actresses and douchebags and moms out there purchasing PCs because they are cheap. Find me one nerd who would buy a PC instead of a Mac. Just one! YOU CAN'T DO IT. Even in a recession, nerds know better.

These are the same people who would buy one digital camera over another because it is 12 megapixels instead of 8 megapixels. These are not people who know what they are talking about. Oh, really? That's the laptop, I should buy, 11 year old boy? THANK YOU FOR IMPARTING YOUR WISDOM TO ME.

Positioning yourself as the cheap alternative may work in the short term. But even douchebag Giampaolo couldn't stop himself from talking about how sexy Macs are, on camera, in a PC commercial. You can't buy advertising like that.

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As much as I hate to admit it, video gaming nerds wouldn't be caught dead with a Mac. The choice is consoles vs PCs, Macs don't even enter into it.

The best part about this spot are the facial expressions the mom makes. Also, she's a total MILF. I bet the casting director was happy when she walked in to audition.

So, yeah, I'm convinced that most people don't give a crap about using well designed and engineered computers (or cameras for that matter). They certainly scoff at the prices associated with well-made products.

Apple should just take out a spot where they have a computer slowly rotating on a lazy susanesque pedestal against a white background with the simple slogan: "You get what you pay for."

video game nerds build their own computers that cost even more than a Mac, then they run Linux on it. doesn't even enter into the conversation.

Kevin,

Only a videogaming nerd would know that. Busted.

Jesse, not only do videogame nerds not use Macs, but they don't run Linux, either. You're spot on about building their own costly computers, though.

"Find me one nerd who would buy a PC instead of a Mac. Just one!" Yeah, that's me. I don't doubt i'd get what i paid for in a Mac, but i'd be paying for much more than i'd ever use. So, being completely self-centered, the spirit i had gleaned from the ad was essentially "hey, average user, don't buy flops you're never gonna use."

sam: I doubt you'd find kevin arguing the fact that he's a video game nerd.

joem: if nerds aren't running linux, then who in the hell is?

yaworm: you are exactly the type of person this ad is pitched at.

yaworm: actually, I take that back. You at least admit that there is going to be a performance difference between a mac and a pc. the commercial contends that there is no difference, and when you get a mac you are just paying for the brand name. which is bullshit.

someone is running linux. besides me - it has increased in market share lately, and the last conference i went to had roughly 10% linux users (vs. ~50%mac, ~30-40% windows. so - video gaming nerds who dual-boot?

and i hate trying to convince people that cheap pcs are crap. they never get it.

Unfortunately, these commercials don't seem to exist in London.

Probably beating a dead thread even further....

I'm not saying that nobody runs linux. But I think videogame nerds are, for the most part, a separate groups of people from nerd nerds. VG nerds have Windows Vista (maybe dual booting with XP?) and $4000-6000 computers, while nerd nerds have 4-6 $600 (or less) computers, each dual- or triple-booting different flavors (and derivatives) of Debian, Gentoo, and Fedora. How's that sound?

Flog that horse...

Sounds reasonable.

@Jim
No we just have commercials that graphically show someone actually having a stroke, slurring and twitching, to ensure we can recognize the symptoms. Rather disturbing.

I'm sorry, Gabe, I'm having a hard time understanding your thick British accent.

Where can you get a better deal on this? eBay?

This makes me happy!

I love my CPU Builds computer- it is surpisingly good in displaying HD video, Blu Ray playback, photo and video editing and gaming( which my son just raves about) It plays his favorite game( Mass Effect 3) in full resolution 3D. He couldn't get enough of our computer so we eventually felt inclined to buy him his own for his birthday! Now we get to use our computer again!

I love my CPU Builds computer- it is surpisingly good in displaying HD video, Blu Ray playback, photo and video editing and gaming( which my son just raves about) It plays his favorite game( Mass Effect 3) in full resolution 3D. He couldn't get enough of our computer so we eventually felt inclined to buy him his own for his birthday! Now we get to use our computer again!

I really like your writing style, good info, appreciate it for putting up :D. "In university they don't tell you that the greater part of the law is learning to tolerate fools." by Doris Lessing.

di intendere, ciononostante non ho proprio pensato youd disporre qualcosa di formativo da dire. Tutto quello il quale sento dicono che sia un po 'di

Sometimes it more about who you know than who you actually are. I happen to know this one guy who has discovered about 30 little secret pockets of money on the web and he says that there may be actually more than $17 billion just waiting to be had from these secret sources. It is all completely hidden so you can't just go out and search for it but I will point you to a video which explains it all. http://tinyurl.com/88954lv

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