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Samsung is so scared of the iPhone X

Published Nov 6th, 2017 11:15AM EST
Galaxy Note 8 vs. iPhone X
Image: YouTube

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I have to say I didn’t see this coming. I thought Samsung had grown up and moved past the kind of TV anti-iPhone commercials it used to run a few years ago. But the company’s latest ad proves that it simply can’t shake off its fear of iPhones.

The one-minute ad is a clear iPhone X hit, even though the name of Apple’s best iPhone ever doesn’t show up at all in the ad. The commercial is funny, and it’ll probably go viral like many anti-iPhone hits from Samsung. It may even do a great job of positioning the Galaxy Note 8 as a decent iPhone X alternative. But a closer look at the ad reveals a plain and simple truth: Samsung is incredibly scared of the iPhone right now.

So let’s start with the premise. An iPhone user who has purchased every iPhone since the original model in 2007 decides all of a sudden that 2017 is the year to switch to a Galaxy Note 8 phone. That’s such good sci-fi that it deserves its own Netflix series.

I’m not saying people don’t switch from iPhones to Galaxy phones. I’m just saying that Samsung is pretty obtuse about this approach. They’re implying that a person who has spent more than $6,000 on iPhones so far, and plenty of cash on digital content, would all of a sudden switch platforms to Android. The chances of that happening are very small, especially because loyalty for Apple products is higher than loyalty for Samsung.

Another theme in the ad is that Apple has constantly released iPhones that were inferior to Samsung’s own phones, which is also outrageous, and Samsung contradicts itself. If iPhones have been so bad for the user, how is it that we keep seeing iPhone lines throughout the commercial, from original iPhone through iPhone X? No Samsung product experienced that kind of interest in the past, and Samsung fully admits that.

As an aside, why has Samsung ripped off the iPhone so blatantly time and time again if it’s such a bad product?

What really annoys me about the ad is Samsung’s audacity in pointing out flaws in previous iPhones while pretending its Galaxy phones were perfect. Yes, jokes about iPhone storage issues, the lack of water resistance in some iPhone models, the iPhone 7 dongle hell might be amusing to some. And that notch haircut is hilarious. But when is the last time iPhones started exploding left and right, injuring users and even engulfing people’s cars and homes in flames?

Mocking the Galaxy Note 7 would have been the opportunity of a lifetime for Apple. Samsung had to recall the phone… twice! But Apple simply ignored it. Now, just a year later, Samsung pretends the Galaxy Note 7 didn’t happen.

And how come the only Samsung phones we get to see in the ad are the 2013 Galaxy Note 3 and the beautiful 2016 Galaxy S7? Where are all the plastic Samsung phones released since 2009? Where are the iPhone clones that got Samsung in legal trouble? And, again, where is the Galaxy Note 7? Oh, wait, those were not good enough for long-time iPhone users to make the switch, right?

Finally, and I probably said this when covering those previous iPhone ads, these commercials don’t just mock Apple and the iPhone. They also make fun of the kind of customers who could be Galaxy S and Galaxy Note buyers. In case you were wondering, Samsung can make great ads for its mobile phones that have nothing to do with the iPhone.

It’s sad to see Samsung resort to mocking the iPhone rather than focusing on the strengths of its own products, which have come a long way since the last time Samsung released trashy ads like this one.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.