This iPhone Ad Is Apple's Way Of Saying There Are A Lot Of Boneheaded Apps Out There

Apple would kindly like to point out that the iPhone can do more than send Snapchats.

Apple has a new commercial out called "Dreams." On the unofficial spectrum of Apple ad-ness that I just invented—which ranges from remarkably tone deaf to "I will more than gladly sit through this whole thing whenever it comes on TV"—"Dreams" dots itself at just above the mean. It's not bad.

As you'll see, it wants you to consider the iPhone a Swiss Army knife, displaying its utility as a viable tool in a number of different fields. In "Dreams"—which is soundtracked by the requisite acoustic guitar/heartstring-yanker Apple's marketing folks seem to go nuts over—the phone is used:

  • To help a pair of meteorologists measure wind speeds along a breezy beach
  • As a magnifying glass to help a jeweler set a diamond
  • To pinpoint the exact location of an emergency for firefighters
  • To translate English to Spanish for a doctor
  • And to listen to the heartbeat of a horse
Yes, that brown stuff is a large animal.

Aspirational? Sure. Diamonds and horses tend to do that. But the ad seems eerily positioned to deflect recent criticisms leveled at the app economy, which is either broken or more innovative than ever, depending on which side you fall. Marco Arment put it best recently when he wrote that the App Store is bloated, with "vast floods of spam, sleaziness, clones, and ripoffs."

But look! The iPhone can do things! Apple insists here. Apps don't just send self-destructing selfies!

It isn't the first time Apple has spent airtime highlighting the iPhone's difference-making potential in an advertisement, either. But, all said, it is one of the better executed.

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3 Comments

  • Alex Krasny

    I am pretty confused where this venom is coming from.

    What's wrong with displaying a variety of apps helping people make thier lives easier? Commercials like this take many weeks, maybe even months to create so I highly doubt it is "in response" to any recent stories about spam apps. But even if it is, what is wrong with that?

    Also who things iphone are only for snapchats? Did Apple assassinate your pets Chris Gayomali?

  • art.carnage

    I laugh every time I see this (though I have to mute the awful soundtrack). The worst is the woman using a thermometer plugged into an iPhone. How absurd. You can buy a digital thermometer at any drug store for 7 to 10 dollars. It has no dangling cord, and you will probably never need to change the battery, and there's no app to install, and you don't have to plug it in to anything, other than someone's mouth.

  • Alex Krasny

    This is a bit like saying why make notes in your phone when you can buy a notepad and a pencil for only $2 at the local wallgreens.

    I don't know exactly what the benefits of the particular app are, but assuming it is a full featured application it probably offers features like: date stamping all of the entries, location stamping all of the entries, letting you make notes about them. I am just spit balling here, there could be many more features.

    I think the idea is, your phone can be a thermometer also.