The Smartphone Wars on Television. The best smartphone commercials.

Apple sold an astounding 47 million iPhones in Q4 2012. This was only good enough for second place in the “smartphone wars”. Samsung, the clear leader, sold nearly 65 million smartphones. The success of Samsung, which is dominating the Android market, is no doubt partly due to their constant, aggressive marketing. Expect more of this as the market continues to grow and continues to attract more and more competition. Since the 2007 launch of the iPhone, then the App Store, then the Google Nexus in 2010, smartphones have come to dominate the personal computing landscape. More than a billion Apple iOS and Android devices have sold in only a few years. Within a few more years – at most – it’s possible that both iOS and Android will each have a user base larger than the global Windows install base. Smartphones represent one of the largest markets in the world, touching consumers and the enterprise, government and education, and impacting work and healthcare, the movie business, retail, gaming and so much more.  No surprise then that we are bombarded with commercials to buy the latest device, to switch to the newest platform. Does this advertising work? We know that Samsung sells the most devices and outspends everyone else in the industry on marketing. Certainly, advertising helps. At least, when done right. Here are what I consider to be the ten best smartphone commercials since the launch of the iPhone. Warning: I am no pushover. Advertisements filled with pretty women or lasers or ninjas, for example, have almost zero impact on my buying decisions. The ads below were appealing enough, clever enough and informative enough to make me consider the product. Or at least, to remember their product long after its demise. 10. Really? While very few people on the planet purchased a “new Windows Phone” this series of ads were funny and memorable. More than that, the entire premise of this campaign was based on an entirely new reality: suddenly we all had smartphones and we were using them all the time, no matter the circumstance.   9. Tacos! This ad from AT&T was not about a single device or even a specific smartphone platform. Rather, with its humorous take on office politics, it showed us all the benefits of the ‘new’ 4G service. In a way, this made it an Android ad, given the number of 4G-ready Android devices,  but that was not the larger point. Rather, this commercial told us that to keep up, even over the most mundane of matters, we needed the most advanced data service available – and a smartphone to match.   8....

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White AT&T HP Veer now just $0.01 at Amazon (with contract)
Jun07

White AT&T HP Veer now just $0.01 at Amazon (with contract)

The HP Veer is the company’s little brother to the Pre 3. It signifies HP’s efforts to put webOS into the hands of the ‘average consumer’, not someone who usually targets smartphones when buying a new handset. The Veer is a bit exclusive also, in that it really can’t be used by people (read: men) with large hands. So the little cute webOS device probably wants to appeal to women more. And now that it’s got a white paint job, it should be able to do that even better, at least according to stereotypes. Well, women and men alike should enjoy this next part: the white Veer can now be yours for one cent. Yes, $0.01. Caveats first: it’s the AT&T version, and you’ll have to sign a new two-year contract to get it at that price. Now if neither of those makes you want to back down, then perhaps you should head straight over to Amazon, where this deal is now available, and order a Veer for yourself or a loved one. Keep in mind that there’s no telling how long this offer will last. The HP Veer (or Veer 4G as AT&T likes to call it) has a 2.6-inch 320×400 capacitive touchscreen, a full physical portrait sliding QWERTY keyboard, a 5 MP camera, an 800 MHz processor, 8 GB of internal storage, HSPA, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, and a 910 mAh battery. Via...

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HP TouchPad may launch on June 12
May30

HP TouchPad may launch on June 12

HP’s first webOS-powered tablet, the TouchPad, is going to be a nice entrance in the tablet market which is getting more and more crowded by the day. That’s even if the TouchPad won’t manage to outsell Apple’s iPad, as HP seems to think will happen. We’ve heard before that the TouchPad may finally launch in June, and today’s information comes to confirm that, as well as peg a specific date for the release. It seems quite plausible that the TouchPad will become available on June 12 – in the US, of course. We still don’t know how quickly the tablet will be able to make its way across the pond onto European shores. The June 12 date comes out of a ‘QuickSpecs’ technical spec sheet for the TouchPad which was leaked to PreCentral today. This four-page document is apparently something that HP readies for its business customers and resellers. Such documents cover basics like which feature is where, model numbers, accessories, and hardware specs (obviously). As you can see from the image above, the prospective date for the TouchPad’s ‘1.0’ release is June 12. ‘1.0’ in this case is the product’s revision number (think of Nokia’s ’00’ in ‘N8-00′ or ’01’ in ‘C6-01’ for example), and that date may be when we finally see HP’s tablet in stores. Of course, the date may have changed since the guide was printed, or may even change from this point on. Yet, as we’ve now heard June being the month of the launch on two separate occasions, we’re betting at least that’s already set in stone. So, June 12 or not, if you’re after a TouchPad, you’ll surely be able to grab one in a few weeks from...

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HP is delusional, thinks the Touchpad will sell more than the iPad
May23

HP is delusional, thinks the Touchpad will sell more than the iPad

Today’s funny moment is brought to you by HP. More specifically, Eric Cador, HP’s European head, has said that HP’s Touchpad is going to be “better than number one”, “number one plus”. Okay, so he didn’t actually say that the Touchpad will sell better than the iPad, although that’s clearly what he implied. Not saying it directly is certainly smart, as he’s going to be able to say he’s been misquoted when investors ask him, during next year’s conference calls, what he was thinking. He believes that HP will perform even better in the tablet space than it has in the PC space, where, “with fewer ways of differentiating HP’s products from our competitors, we became number one”. Let’s just ignore that strange-sounding assertion (I would certainly like to hear why exactly he thinks that the PC space allows for less differentiation than tablets) and focus on “number one plus”. That has to be one of the most void-of-any-meaning things we’ve heard from a big honcho at any company during the past few years. Again, not saying anything directly (those investors must really bite). Not “we’re going to be No.1”, not “we’ll seel more than anyone else”, not even “our product itself is better than the competition” (although I suspect that latter example is what the aforementioned investors will hear when Cador spins this). No. Number one plus. What does that even mean? Seriously, what? 0? -1? 0.5? Almost No.1? I don’t get it. And I don’t think we’re supposed to get it, because there’s nothing to get. HP is just desperate for some attention ahead of its European launch of the Touchpad. That’s all. As for the WebOS-powered tablet selling more than the iPad… Yeah. Right. Sure, HP has a lot of distribution muscle, inherited from its PC arm (pun intended, indeed). However, distribution isn’t enough, as Nokia has so eloquently proven. Sure, HP has what is probably the best looking mobile operating system, and one of the most capable. But until developers will start noticing it, it can’t even compete with Android (in the tablet space) or Windows Phone 7 (in, erm, phones). Cador promises that the Touchpad will launch in Europe with “thousands” of apps. Sorry. Until that’s “tens of thousands”, or, even better, “hundreds of thousands”, the tablet market will still be dominated by the always interesting Apple Vs. Google “fight”. Not because any one person will ever install 100K apps on her or his tablet, but because with big numbers come better chances that everything you need is there. Platforms that have big app numbers are also those that developers tend to write apps...

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Verizon’s HP Pre 3 passes the FCC
May11

Verizon’s HP Pre 3 passes the FCC

Back in April, we saw a version of HP’s Pre 3 running on Verizon’s network. While Verizon still hasn’t announced it would offer the smartphone, it may do it quite soon, since a CDMA / EvDo Pre 3 has been approved by the FCC yesterday. The Pre 3 approved by the Federal Commission also has GSM / UMTS connectivity, so it will be a world phone when (if) launched by Verizon. The HP Pre 3 runs webOS 2.2 and features a 3.6 inch WVGA multi-touch display, sliding QWERTY keyboard, Wi-Fi, GPS, 5MP autofocus camera with LED flash, 720p video recording, 512MB RAM, 1.4GHz single-core processor, and 8GB/16 GB of on-board memory. Via Wireless...

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HP Veer 4G announced by AT&T, will be available on May 15
May04

HP Veer 4G announced by AT&T, will be available on May 15

Well, what do you know, the tiny HP Veer is coming to AT&T later this month: today, the carrier has officially announced that the smartphone would be exclusively available to its customers starting May 15, in two color versions (black and white). Since it’s one of the “20 4G devices” that AT&T will introduce “by the end of the year”, its Veer has been dubbed HP Veer 4G. The new HP smartphone will cost $99.99 with a 2-yr contract agreement. The Veer 4G runs webOS 2.1 and features a 2.6 inch, 320 x 400 pixels touchscreen display, Wi-Fi, GPS, Adobe Flash 10.1 support, 3.5mm headset jack, 5MP camera, 8GB of onboard memory, and an 800MHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. Via Press...

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White HP Veer 4G coming to AT&T soon?
Apr29

White HP Veer 4G coming to AT&T soon?

Officially introduced way back in February alongside the HP Pre 3 and the HP TouchPad, the Palm HP Veer seems to be making its way to AT&T. Some press photos of a Veer running on AT&T’s network have appeared over at Pocket Now. Surprisingly, this is a white version of the Veer (unannounced until now). The Veer will support AT&T’s HSPA+ network, thus it will be one of the carrier’s 4G smartphones. Other than HSPA+, the handset will feature WebOS 2.x, a 2.6 inch display with 400 x 320 pixels, sliding QWERTY keyboard, Wi-Fi, GPS, 3.5mm headset jack, 5MP camera, and an 800 MHz processor. The Veer 4G could be announced by AT&T next week (or sometime in May anyway). In Germany, the new HP smartphone will be available starting June, via...

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Screenshots of WebOS 3.0 Leak, Show off HP TouchPad
Apr07

Screenshots of WebOS 3.0 Leak, Show off HP TouchPad

We’ve seen pictures taken of HP’s new version of WebOS before, but now we have actually found some screenshots, courtesy of PreCentral. These shots show a few aspects of the OS, as if it were on the HP TouchPad. We still don’t know when we’ll actually be able to get some hands-on time with WebOS 3.0, but since we are starting to see screenshots leaked through to us, it likely means we’re getting pretty close to the “summer” release timeframe. So check out the screenshots below and enjoy. One notable difference is the choice here to go with Bing Maps, which means you’ll get more 45-degree birds-eye views, but you won’t get the same accuracy in traffic data as you would with Google Maps. Bing is also notable for its minimalist approach, which is good or bad depending on how you feel about that style. Here’s a few other screenshots now. Device Menu Keyboard Messaging Do you see anything new in there that appeals to you as a potential WebOS user? via...

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New HP WebOS smartphone (Stingray?) and Verizon Pre 3 leaked
Apr06

New HP WebOS smartphone (Stingray?) and Verizon Pre 3 leaked

Since HP took over Palm, the company announced only two new smartphones: the HP Pre 3, and the HP Veer. A third one may come soon, and, unlike the Pre 3 and the Veer, it seems that it won’t have a QWERTY keyboard. PreCentral received an image which allegedly shows the upcoming HP smartphone. Possibly codenamed HP Stingray, the handset is a bit bigger than the Pre 3, and likely has a WVGA display. That’s pretty much all we know about it. We also have news on the Pre 3 – which has been spotted running on Verizon’s network. The new Pre is a CDMA / GSM device, so it would be a nice addition to Verizon’s line-up of global smartphones. Of course, the carrier hasn’t announced that it would offer the Pre 3, but it could do it...

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Verizon Palm Pre 2 now free on contract
Mar09

Verizon Palm Pre 2 now free on contract

Although the HP Pre 3 has been announced recently, Verizon has only gotten around to starting selling the Palm Pre 2 in the second half of last month. Having the newer model announced while trying to sell the older model can clearly hurt sales, and Verizon’s decision to stock the Pre 2 so late (after all, it’s been announced by HP in October of last year) makes little sense. However, there’s good news for those in love with webOS. You can now get your very own webOS 2-based device, the Pre 2, on Verizon in the US, for free. Not $199, not $99, free. HP will give a Pre 2 to you for free, but you have to sign a new two-year contract with Verizon. But if you were after the Pre 2 specifically, or don’t much care for the Pre 3, or just want a webOS device now, this is probably for you. So head straight over to HP’s Wireless Central Store and get your free Pre 2 while supplies last. Via...

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