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Samsung’s “Ingenius” ads for Galaxy S9 picks on Apple arrogance

By Jules Wang July 22, 2018, 7:47 pm

It seems like Samsung has found its swing with a couple of commercials taking on Chyvonne Scott’s swinging song “I’m Moving On.”

After the Galaxy Note 8 was launched, we saw an ad that told viewers to grow up and away from their iPhone right before the iPhone X became available. Shortly following the Galaxy S9 debut, we saw an iPhone throttled and rained upon beyond usability. In both ads, we saw this weird man with a buzz cut that cheekily resembled the notch on top of the iPhone X.

This week, Samsung released a set of ads with one of the actors from the “Moving On series” No, it’s not about the life of notch-buzz-cut man and his child. It’s about that Genius Bar employee who told Andrea Babinski (the actor with the iPhone 6 in the S9 ad) to either turn off the performance management feature and risk random shutdowns or to upgrade her phone.


This editor would tell you the name of the actor who plays that Genius, but alas, scouring has turned up nothing.

In any case, we get four ads that show this Genius playing up one of the big stereotypes that any association to Apple brings about: arrogance, aloofness, dogmatism.

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Don’t get us wrong, he fits the bill for what Samsung wanted to portray. But we’re not too keen on capitalizing on a tired, patronizing trope. It seems as though the customers the Genius interacts with are just there to point out flaws of the iPhones and were paid by Samsung (oh, right, it’s an ad) to be there. And while there are enthusiasts from every corner of the mobile tech room, it’s really not going to excite people in the foreground. Perhaps that’s why this series of ads is web-only.


Well, in terms of what these ads address, one’s about the missing headphone jack and the art of the dongle — still a hot button issue even after a couple of years — while another hits on the camera — which mentions DxOMark scoring and a good camera a DxOMark Mobile score does not make. Then we have talk about cellular speeds — Apple’s been throttling the performance of modems made by Qualcomm to match the speeds of those made by Intel and may be waiting until 2020 to push its first 5G phone, a year behind the competition — and, to finish it off, the lack of a fast charger in the box — while this year’s upcoming iPhones are expected to have them, iPhone 8 and iPhone X owners have to buy a USB-C to Lightning cable with a MacBook adapter to take advantage of faster charging speeds.

Sure, there are points to be made here. This probably wasn’t the best way to make them.


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