Apple fans told to "Wake up" in bizarre BlackBerry stunt

Wake Up! A cryptic message from a bizarre mob swarming Apple Stores has been revealed to be the work of BlackBerry, not Samsung.

Wake Up! That's the cryptic message for Apple fans from a bizarre mob swarming Apple Stores. Samsung was the prime suspect, but the perpetrator has now been revealed: BlackBerry.

The strange stunt consisted of mysterious black-clad protestors swarming Australian Apple Stores in Sydney and Melbourne, waving signs and chanting "Wake up!"

At first no-one claimed responsibility for the mystifying marketing ploy, making Samsung the prime suspect. It's only a matter of days until the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S3, and Samsung has been taking a pop at Apple customers lately. But the countdown on the Wake Up website ticks down to 7 May, when BlackBerry 10 is expected to be unveiled, instead of 3 May, when the S3 debuts.

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion came clean and admitted that it had dispatched the protestors to throng the Aussie Apple Stores. The campaign of "experiential events" -- that's marketing speak for "playing silly beggars" -- is building towards a big reveal next week. The campaign will "provoke conversation on what "being in business" means to Australians."

Yaaawwwn.

I'm guessing RIM wants to reassert BlackBerry as the king of the business blowers, a position that's been eroded as more and more people adopt iPads and smart phones for work.

Check out the flashmob in action in this video from Down Under:

Whatever it is, the odd tactics smack of desperation. Samsung's 'sheep' jibes overstep the mark by mocking users instead of products, and this looks similar. We'll have to wait and see what BlackBerry actually unveil.

Is this a clever attention-grabbing ploy by BlackBerry, or a weird stunt that smacks of desperation? Wake up and tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.

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About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.

 

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