On Sunday night, the unthinkable happened.
No, it wasn’t when the Golden State Warriors dismantled the Cleveland Cavaliers to the tune of 110-77. And it wasn’t when that crazy thing happened on Game of Thrones (no spoilers). It was when a commercial aired featuring Paul Marcarelli, best known as the “Can you hear me now?” Test Man for Verizon.
But the commercial was for Sprint.
USA Today spoke with Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure over the phone, and he told them that Paul is a “free agent” who is being “very factual” in the ad:
“Our goal is basically to get people when they’re watching our ads or watching social media to pay attention…. I think a lot of people are going to recognize Paul and see Paul in a yellow t-shirt and ask themselves, ‘what happened?'”
The gist of the ad is that Sprint’s reliability is now within 1% of Verizon’s, despite that fact that the Sprint’s rates are still 50% lower than most of the plans offered by not only Verizon, but AT&T and T-Mobile as well.
Sprint even set up a landing page with Paul’s face on it, just to drive the point home.
You can watch the first of several ads featuring the former Verizon pitch man below: