A Samsung ad is floating around the Internet via Business Insider, where they are once again are calling out Apple’s iPhone, this time in a direct comparison with their flagship Galaxy S III. They outline specs of their phone vs the iPhone 5, with a tagline that reads, “It doesn’t take a genius.” This is expected to be run in major newspapers starting tomorrow.
Apple breathren have take umbrage to the questionable specification comparison and the inference that someone selecting an iPhone 5 might not be smarter than a 5th grader. It likely means different things to different people. It all depends on how you read it. I see it as a dig at Apple, whose in-store support group are deemed Geniuses. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s catchy and gets your interest. The few Android focused blogs I polled have reported on this as some sort of rallying battle cry. Whether or not you agree with this form of advertising, there is no questioning that it’s effective. They’ve all taken the bait. Hook. Line. Sinker. Without this ad, we’d certainly have no reason to talk about the Samsung Galaxy S III. The coverage isn’t limited to specific phone niche blogs, finding its way to the San Francisco Chronicle and social media.
Before it’s even found its way into a print ad, it has caused posts on blogs from both sides of the aisle and the middle. It’s plausible that more people will see this ad online, then they do in print. It’s the great Samsung Galaxy S III vs iPhone 5 debate, all stirred up from this ad. Android sites are always going to talk about the S III, but it’s not a common occurrence on most iPhone sites. We’re guessing that if you’ve found your way to everythingiCafe, your interest lies with the iPhone and that’s how we handle our coverage. Today we’re talking about Samsung. Tonight, their ad company wins. News sites that don’t have a dog in the fight are also covering an “ad”.
Comparing your product to a a competing product isn’t anything new. Advertisers have been doing this sort of thing for years. In 2008 during the Super Bowl, Hyundai called out Mercedes, Lexus and BMW. It immediately asked customers to think differently about the car maker. For the first time, people were talking about Hyundai with the likes of the top tier of automobile manufacturers.
Like it or not, the iPhone has been the gold standard for which most smartphones have been judged. I’d submit that Samsung’s direct attack on the iPhone in some way ascends their phones into the same class among consumers who don’t know much about Samsung phones. I say consumers, because most enthusiasts know that mentioning Samsung’s GSIII compared to the iPhone is not as drastic as Hyundai’s comparison to BMW, Lexus and Mercedes. These are both great phones, offering very different experiences. Some people like Coke, some like Pepsi. For those planning on purchasing an iPhone, this ad likely won’t sway them. Perhaps it does the most damage to the other Android phones. By taking on Apple, they are the self-proclaimed heavyweight. They are Pepsi to Apple’s Coke. Don’t be offended by Samsung’s ad, applaud it and then get back to tracking your iPhone 5.