Google is attempting to file a patent that would thrust smartphone users into Orwell’s “1984.” TheNextWeb reported on Wednesday that the search giant is looking to patent a technology that can analyze the background noise during mobile phone calls and then serve up advertisements based on the environmental conditions Google hears. In short, the company’s famous “don’t be evil” motto may soon evolve into “we are going to listen to your phone calls to make money.” One example of Google’s proposed technology would recognize the background noise made by rain when a user makes a phone call in inclement weather, and then serve an advertisement for umbrellas. In addition, the system might also analyze background noise while users take photos and videos to serve up similar targeted ads. Of course there is no reason to sound the alarms just yet, as technologies described in patents often don’t see the light of day. More →
Microsoft has started to run anti-Google newspaper ads in a clear effort to sway people from using Google’s services. On Monday, Google announced that it was combining its individual privacy policies to make privacy “more intuitive” for its users. The U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee was worried that Google was actually collecting more information under its new rules, but Google responded to those claims and said it was not actually collecting more data. Microsoft isn’t convinced. “To be clear, there’s nothing inherently wrong with wanting to improve the quality of an advertising product,” Microsoft said in a newspaper ad. “But, that effort needs to be balanced with continuing to meet the needs and interests of users. Every business finds its own balance and attracts users who share those priorities. Google’s new changes have upset that balance, with users’ priorities being de-prioritized. That’s why people are concerned and looking for alternatives… If these changes rub you the wrong way, please consider using our portfolio of award-winning products and services.” The ad also tells newspaper readers that “every data point Google collects and connects to you increases how valuable you are to an advertiser.” Microsoft is currently running the advertisements in USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. More →
Samsung announced on Monday that the company will be launching the Galaxy Note smartphone with a 90-second Super Bowl commercial, which will be the first-ever Super Bowl ad in the technology giant’s 71-year history. “During the past six months we’ve launched the Galaxy S II, Galaxy Nexus and now the Galaxy Note super phone in North America bringing unparalleled innovation to the marketplace,” said Todd Pendleton, Samsung‘s American Chief Marketing Officer. “The Galaxy Note ushers in the era of truly personalized communications, allowing people to capture, share and create like never before.” Samsung chose Bobby Farrelly — who created “There’s Something About Mary” and other popular comedies with his brother Peter — to direct the commercial. The advertisement will air during the fourth quarter of Super Bowl XLVI on February 5th, the same day the device is made available for pre-order from AT&T. Read on for Samsung’s press release. More →
While smartphone users in general may eventually be caught in the crossfire brought about by Apple and Samsung’s patent battles, a very specific group of smartphone users has become collateral damage in Samsung’s new anti-iPhone advertising campaign: baristas. Samsung’s first run in its new campaign included a quick poke at a creative barista, but now the men and women who serve up hot coffee on a daily basis are the focus of Samsung’s playful attack. Dubbed “Urban Camping,” the company’s new ad kicks off with a pair of Galaxy S II users mockingly admiring an iPhone-toting barista’s latte art. When the barista’s friends enter the coffee shop excited to go camping, one Galaxy S II user harnesses the phone’s 4G speed to instantly reserve a camp site for everyone to use. The simple-minded iPhone owners become disheartened, clarifying that they’re simply camping out on line while waiting for the new iPhone to be released. Hipsters in general were addressed in Samsung’s earlier ads, but the company appears to now be “Samsunging” more specific groups of consumers it deems likely to own iPhones. With Super Bowl XLVI coming up on February 5th and Samsung having lined up a pricey ad spot, baristas may want to avert their eyes and hide their coffees during commercial breaks this year. The new Galaxy S II ad can be watched in full below.
Google recently confirmed that YouTube now receives more than 4 billion video views per day. Reuters reported the news Monday morning and noted that the site has seen a 25% increase in videos viewed per day since May. Google, which owns YouTube, also confirmed that there are more than 60 hours of fresh video uploaded each minute, up from the 48 hours of video added per minute in May. Advertisements on videos generate roughly $5 billion in revenue each year, Reuters said, but just 3 billion videos feature ads each week. The growth in viewership was attributed to users accessing the service from smartphones and televisions. More →
Following Samsung’s recent run of television advertisements depicting iPhone users as mindless hipster sheep, the company’s ad firm is back with another spot that again takes aim at Apple fans. The new ad shows iPhone 4 owners camped outside an Apple Store waiting for the latest iPhone model to finally go on sale. As people in line watch the first iPhone 4S unboxing video from London, they’re disappointed to learn that the phone “looks like last year’s phone.” Then when a Galaxy S II user comes by to bring his roommate a charger, two iPhone users admire the voice-guided navigation the man used to find his way to the Apple Store. When they find out that the navigation service is free on the Galaxy S II and not part of a paid app, they apparently get “Samsunged.” The full ad can be viewed after the break. More →
Apple’s first television advertisement for the iPhone 4S began airing on Thursday and it bills the new smartphone as Apple’s most amazing iPhone yet. Titled simply “Assistant,” the ad places Apple’s new virtual personal assistant Siri front and center as it rapidly passes through a montage of iPhone 4S owners calling on Siri for help. One man asks Siri how to tie a bow tie, while a concerned woman asks for the fastest route to Hartford Hospital. A businessman asks Siri to reschedule his meeting and a young girl asks what a weasel looks like. The commercial runs through a dozen scenarios where Siri comes in handy, wrapping things up with a woman who locked herself out of her home. The woman simply states, “I’m locked out,” and Siri quickly uses her GPS location and a web search to replies with “I found 3 locksmiths fairly close to you.” Siri is the gift that keeps on giving, of course, and this is the first of many ads we’ll see touting the iPhone 4S’ most compelling new feature. A video of Apple’s Assistant spot follows below. More →
Two leaked advertisements for one of Nokia’s first Windows Phones have been published by Pocketnow. The ads refer to the device as the “Nokia 800,” which could be the “Sea Ray” that has surfaced several times. One of the images also suggests the Nokia 800 is equipped with an 8-megapixel camera, although other specifications are still unknown. There is a blue Nokia 800 in the second image, which implies the phone will be, in typical Nokia fashion, available in several different colors. Hopefully Nokia decides to carry over its aluminum unibody design from the N8, too, although the build materials are also still unclear. We will no doubt hear more about the 800 and maybe even additional Windows Phone handsets during Nokia World, which kicks off on October 26th in London. Read on for a second image. More →
A developer named Michael Lee Johnson recently decided to advertise his Google+ profile on Facebook. Unfortunately, it might not have panned out as well as Johnson had hoped. Johnson’s self-made advertisement, which said “If you’re lucky enough to have a Google+ account, add Michael Lee Johnson, Internet Geek, App Developer, Technological Virtuoso” under the headline “Add Michael to Google+” was pulled by Facebook shortly after he posted it. Worse, Facebook took the matter so seriously that the social network banned all of Johnson’s other advertising campaigns. According to CNET the message from Facebook said:
Johnson told CNET that he’s considering taking legal action against Facebook for damage to his reputation and emotional distress. Hit the jump for a screenshot of his Facebook ad. More →
Samsung is starting to advertise its new flagship Android smartphone, the Galaxy S II. In its first commercial spot, the Galaxy S II’s screen is portrayed as being so realistic, you are compelled to drown it in a tank of water… or something like that. The twenty-one second spot pimps the phone’s Super AMOLED Plus prowess, albeit in a rather boring fashion. Regardless, if you’re interested in seeing the G-rated commercial it’s waiting for you after the break. More →
Following T-Mobile’s announcement that its 3G HSPA+ network is now its 4G HSPA+ network, the company has already stepped up its marketing in several areas. Our favorite, without question, is a new ad the carrier is running for the T-Mobile myTouch 4G. The ad mirrors the style of Apple’s “I’m a Mac” campaign, and takes shots directly at Apple’s iPhone and the “old AT&T network” the popular handset is apparently forced to carry on its back. The spot goes on to boast the T-Mobile 4G network’s ability to let users video chat anywhere, whereas iPhone users can only make FaceTime calls while connected to Wi-Fi. In the end, it’s a great playful ad that hits the iPhone where it hurts… right in the Ma Bells. Hit the jump for the video. More →
If you’re a webOS/Palm Pre die-hard, and looking forward to the refinements of the Pre 2, we have a little something for you. It looks like a thirty second advert for the updated, pebble-shaped handset has made its way onto YouTube. The official spot, dubbed Sizzle, features some of the new niceties in webOS 2.0 and several critical applications — including Angry Birds and Facebook. The clip is waiting for you after the jump. Enjoy.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Google confirmed that by the end of the year, YouTube will give users the option to skip the pre-roll ads that launch before a video. The online video giant will also implement an ad selection feature that will allow users to select an ad that they find appealing prior to watching a longer-format video. YouTube will only pay for ads that have been watched, so advertisers that want a slice of the growing YouTube ad revenue will have to create compelling ads that users want to watch. Free video content with high quality commercials that are relevant to you — sounds like a good compromise. More →