I'm not sure what Samsung was thinking with their latest Galaxy S5 ad. They're once again desperately, cynically trying to call iPhone owners stupid for, what they feel, is having fallen for a reality distortion field that favors fruit logos over functionality. You. Me. Our friends. Our families. All of us. Stupid. But do you know what I see? An airport full of people, the vast, vast majority of whom are iPhone users and who value their iPhones so much they can't stop using them, even if they have to stay plugged in, hugging the walls, just to keep on using them. That's a pretty spectacular endorsement for a competitor.
Even when Samsung shows one of the few people using its phones, that person is happy about the standby time — about the time it will last if she doesn't use it.
Apple's latest ad, by contrast, focuses not on power but on empowerment. Not only does Apple's ad mention competitors precisely never, it shows off a lot of amazing ways the iPhone can be used with kids. That includes things like education, like the difference between the words "bigger" and "better".
Samsung gets the two confused in their ad but the difference is simple. One equates to quality. The other to quantity.
If you make something "bigger" you can cram more into it. You can even turn most of it off if that's what you want to call power saving. That's what Samsung chose to do.
But you can also make something truly "better". You can keep it thin and light and power efficient, and still shock the world by leaping to 64-bit before anyone else even realizes it's possible. That's what Apple did.
That distinction between "bigger" and "better" is really important. It's really important if for no other reason than consumers absolutely deserve "better". We deserve to be lifted up and not pushed down. We deserve to be treated with respect and not called stupid by one of the biggest manufacturers of consumer electronics on the planet — by a company whose televisions and appliances we might own or at the very least have previously considered buying.
So, yeah, I'll charge my iPhone when I have to so I can keep on using it as much as I want to. I'll smartly keep my external charger — roughly the same size as a swappable battery anyway — in my pocket so I can save it for the flight and not have to sacrifice functionality for power savings.
And I'll thank Samsung for showing just how irresistible the iPhone truly is, and highlighting by contrast just how optimistic and inspirational Apple's been lately.
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Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.