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New Microsoft ads take aim at "Mac vs. PC".

by whereisit / September 18, 2008 4:41 PM PDT
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by Nicholas Buenk / September 18, 2008 10:01 PM PDT

They're rather generic compared to what we had before, the Seinfeld ads were if anything interesting and original. Wink And were worthy of attention even if it was just to go '*** was that'. Makes it good as a viral ad. But these new adverts are a pretty ordinary advert and undeserving of media attention. Yet probably more effective as actual adverts.
Ohh btw could be a lot worse.... See Intel's new compaign, god....

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I agree, These will probably work better.
by minimalist / September 19, 2008 12:11 AM PDT
In reply to: Well...

But they are kind of generic. These heartstring-tugging-we-are-one-world-feel-good style ads are so overdone. This could just as easily be an ad from a stodgy old bank trying to humanize its image or from a petroleum company trying to convince us of how green they are. As a consumer I just tune out when these kinds of ads come on.

But if the campaign helps Microsoft's brand then I guess it will have been successful.

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Interesting John Gruber analysis
by Fe1d / September 20, 2008 10:30 AM PDT
In reply to: Well...

Thanks @Khaled for plurking this link:

Gruber says "what makes Microsoft?s new 'I?m a PC' commercials so jaw-droppingly bad is that they?re not countering Apple?s message, but instead they?re reinforcing it. That the spots themselves jump between dozens of different people who 'are' PCs, that the spots make a point of emphasizing that there are a billion Windows-running PCs worldwide, this only emphasizes that 'PC' is not a brand name but a generic.

"Microsoft?s new ads emphasize the same message as Apple?s: that the Mac is the one and only brand-name computer in the world."

I've also been plurking reminders that "PC" is a registered trademark of IBM. Before the IBM PC, small computers were not called "personal computers", but "home computers" or "microcomputers", hence the "Microsoft" portmanteau from "micro(computer) soft(ware)". IBM hasn't really defended the PC brand since losing the clone wars, but notably licensed its use to Apple back when Macs ran on IBM's PowerPC chips. So, Macs really are PCs in more than just the generic sense, but in the legal sense. Apple chose generic PCs as a contrast to Macs for a form of immunity from retaliation.

Apple is saying Macs rise above generic PCs; MS is saying PCs are generic. If I'm Dell, now I have to run an ad to counter Microsoft's.

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Yes but..
by RobertK2of3 / September 20, 2008 2:49 PM PDT

Gruber's analysis is interesting, but, don't you think MS is just saying "Everyone uses PC's, including lots of cool people--you should too"?

I thought the ads were good, because they showed that it was cool to use Windows, because all these people (including celebrities and normal people like you and me) use Windows (PC's).

That's what I took from the ads anyway.

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by Fe1d / September 21, 2008 9:08 AM PDT
In reply to: Yes but..

I think you're spot-on.

The TWiTsters mentioned Mike Arrington's analysis that the MS ad tends to make the Apple ads look more mean-spirited, elitist, etc., because now they seem to belittle "the rest of us".

On balance, the MS "I'm a PC" ad may not change much one direction or another, but it does send a clear, positive message about PCs, and in that way, is probably better than the Gates/Seinfeld series.

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I agree with this post more than your first...
by robstak / September 21, 2008 11:02 AM PDT
In reply to: yes

MY first impressions were this:
-PC's are used everywhere, maybe macs are a niche market.
-It't friendly and positive, making apple look like a jerk, kinda.
-The african school kids: like there would EVER be one mac per child...

i think they did a great job, staying positive, way positive...

and as far as PC being used generically, i think that's fine. ppl realize now. and if you have a pc, chances are it has windows. there's no point to remind ppl about Vista, really. besides, its almost not fair that since apple controls both software and hardware that they CAN advertise like that, but i think it ultimately works to their disability cuz in the end your pc can look like anything and do anything which is cool.

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Maybe Apple should counter with ads
by minimalist / September 21, 2008 11:32 AM PDT

with all sorts of normal poeple that say:

"I USED to be a PC.... but I got tired of all maintainance, the defragmenting, the reinstalling of the OS and programs, the constant windows updates, the virus and malware updates, and always trying to hunt down drivers and troubleshoot whenever some new peripheral didn't work right.

Because that is the reason for which half a dozen of my friends are (including my 79 year old mom and dad) bought Macs. They are not cool or hip per se. They are just normal people who got tired of all the crap that came with the ownership of a windows machine.

And I know there will always be some windows apologist who'll say "but its not that hard to do x, y, and z". But consumers shouldn't HAVE to do X,Y, and Z every few days just to use a computer to do basic things. A lot of these friends and family got to where they just didn't have any more time to jerk around with all that stuff during their free time. Their time was worth more to them then the few hundred bucks they might save by getting a windows machine. These are not elitists. They are an under served market to which Apple is smartly catering because every other manufacturer seems too preoccupiued with a race to the bottom.

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Amen to that
by RobertK2of3 / September 21, 2008 12:38 PM PDT

I guess this is probably off-topic from the subject of the ad, but you summed up the reason I switched perfectly.

I used to do all the maintenance and everything, and I'm capable, but there is a computer out there that allows me to fnot have to. Its like they thought of the customer, instead of the movie industry, or partners, or pirates, or whomever else they could. This is what really turned me off to Vista -- and why I decided to never buy it.

I use PC's at work and its like a different world coming home to the Mac.

Since I've got the Mac, I've done video conversion (VHS to DVD), audio recording, and a slew of other things I've always wanted to do, but didn't want to do bad enough to deal with on the PC--just too big a headache.

One more nice thing about the Mac is that there is actually technological development going on in OSX. ZFS is coming, Time Machine, etc..., there is real progress being made in OSX, whereas Windows has a new interface with all the familiar settings switched around.

When I upgraded to the latest OSX, my computer was actually FASTER! The OS was FASTER. That is something that blew my mind, coming from the Windows world.

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Many have argued that Microsoft traditionally values
by minimalist / September 21, 2008 2:27 PM PDT
In reply to: Amen to that

the concerns of their Enterprise customers (IT directors and managers) more than home consumers. Hence why my mom used to get crazy cryptic error messages with Windows XP that left her (and me) baffled. Why couldn't it just be in plain English? Examples like this abound and after a while avergae consumers just say enough is enough.

Well you get my point. Windows is perfectly serviceable. It gets the job done but it doesn't excite me to use it everyday. I use it all day at work and it gives me a lot more problems than my Mac. I know how to troubleshoot the issues, I just don;t want to do it anymore. I just let the IT department deal with it all.

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PC not complicated or difficult
by MikeM132 / September 22, 2008 8:50 AM PDT
In reply to: Amen to that

Hey Amen to That:
You apparently don't know much about computers. Maybe the Mac platform is better for novices...not sure. I can tell you that every single one of your PC complaints is false. Every one. I let the computer do it's own maintenance (if you are claiming there is no disk maintenance on OSX, you'd better check again). I have not re-installed an OS in years (other than on a crashed notebook HD). I have challenged Mac "experts" to find something they can do on a Mac that I can't do in Windows (and often more quickly). Nothing yet, although I wonder how "expert" those Mac users really are.
Mac can be an OK platform. They have some huge advantages in a single-source system. That is also a huge disadvantage at the same time in hardware and software choices. Windows has also supported legacy hardware and software for many years where Mac abandons it. That kind of setup sure makes it easy to throw darts at the big guy who decided not to abadon the WIndows 95 user with a SCSI scanner.
Mac abadons everyone not using a late-model computer and the current OS.
By the way, I could (and did) convert MANY VHS tapes to DVD in Windows about 5 years ago using XP. You had to buy a Mac to figure that out? Maybe Mac really is for the novice!

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*sigh* ...this just proves my point
by minimalist / September 22, 2008 10:58 AM PDT

If anybody points out that Macs are easier to maintain and generally less trouble than a Windows system they immediately get dismissed as noobs or inexperienced (or even better when they get labeled "sheep" somehow their preference for a Mac is construed as a slight against their manhood).

I've been using PC's since I entered the workplace in 1993. I've used and maintained machines running 3.1, 95, 98, , NT, 2000, and XP in our offices and in my home. If that makes me a "novice" in this some silly geek p!ssing contest then so be it. I am through wasting my time on all nonsense that comes with Windows.

I KNOW how to keep a Windows machine in top operating condition. I am just not interested in spending my time that way anymore. Apparently, a lot of Mac users agree with me. I know how to reroof my house as well but I'm not interested in doing that anymore either.

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amen to that
by RobertK2of3 / September 22, 2008 1:12 PM PDT

Same here. I started with Dos 5.2 (I believe) with Win 3.0 as the UI (a bit before 3.1 came out), but just as a hobbyist. I think 3.1 was the first system I got paid to support.

Perhaps we have seen too much.

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you also had a new computer...
by robstak / September 22, 2008 10:06 AM PDT
In reply to: Amen to that

maybe that's why it was fast?

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RE: Maybe Apple should counter with ads
by Fe1d / September 22, 2008 1:32 AM PDT
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Oh didnt realize macs NEVER have problems... huh...
by robstak / September 22, 2008 10:04 AM PDT

let us be fair:

1. macs have viruses. the pcs only have more because they sell better than macs and there are thefore more of them.

2. you never have to defrag a mac? i didnt know that. what does it do differently?

3. Hunting down drivers. At least PC's have drivers for so many peripherals that macs don't...

4. I'm somewhat of a basic user and ive never done x y or z. every few days???? c'mon broseph...

5. Wanting a mac doesnt make you an elitist, acting like a d0uche bag makes you an elitest (generic you).

you know what's also cool about PC's?

1. If I want to throw away money and pay a premium for a computer, I can. If I don't I can still buy something inexpensive.

2. Also, how's Crysis on Leopard?

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jumping in
by RobertK2of3 / September 22, 2008 1:06 PM PDT

1. macs have viruses. the pcs only have more because they sell better than macs and there are thefore more of them.

Aside from you making the case for Macs (less viruses=less hassle) there aren't really any that spread and Macs are generally more secure (no root privileges without asking). I think Vista has this as well, so its probably better than XP.

I haven't used a virus scanner in over a year on my Mac. Just installed one last week and no viruses. My wife's XP laptop needs virus scanning and spyware scanning all the time. Really, without a firewall, your windows machine will be infected in about 30 min. I've read that and a sysadmin friend of mine experienced it first hand. I don't think there is much argument that Mac's are less maintenance in this way.

2. you never have to defrag a mac? i didnt know that. what does it do differently?

3. Hunting down drivers. At least PC's have drivers for so many peripherals that macs don't...

I'm not sure what your point is here. Can you back this up with an article or research someone did? There are a lot of games that don't work on Macs, but I never had to look for drivers too hard. They are usually there with the Windows drivers. I could be wrong though. Have you heard this is a issue?

4. I'm somewhat of a basic user and ive never done x y or z. every few days???? c'mon broseph...

5. Wanting a mac doesnt make you an elitist, acting like a d0uche bag makes you an elitest (generic you).

I agree, but between you and me, I have my suspicions about some of the guys at the Genius bar.

you know what's also cool about PC's?

1. If I want to throw away money and pay a premium for a computer, I can. If I don't I can still buy something inexpensive.

Tack on the $150 for Vista.

2. Also, how's Crysis on Leopard?

Can't play PC games on a Mac. Xbox 360 is good for that though, but you are right, if your a PC gamer, you don't want a Mac. The video is really nice on Macs, I'm not sure why Apple doesn't get on board with game companies. I've heard the guys at Apple were d-bags to game developers, so not too many companies bother. There are fun games on Macs, but they are more puzzle games. No argument from me there--I just play on the Xbox.

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by Nicholas Buenk / September 22, 2008 7:09 PM PDT
In reply to: jumping in

I just gave an AMD box I use for gaming, use the macbook pro for everything else. Beats rebooting.

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by robstak / September 23, 2008 9:17 AM PDT
In reply to: jumping in

1. viruses: its almost not fair arguement is the point i was trying to make. its not like macs are more sound, they are just less often targeted... that was my point.

2. thats really interesting. i wasnt trying to be a jerk, i really just didnt know, lol, so thanks for the link! but as you see in the article, when you do fill your drive, you need to have apples background defragging going on... still cool idea tho.

3. my point here was that PC's have more things you can connect to them or put in them. maybe im wrong now that macs are intel-based. but why are third party drivers easier to find for macs then pcs?? i think the driver thing is a dumb point in general.

6. 150$ for vista still cheaper than the 500-600 premium on some macs. sony is like that too, but at least you have the option to get an eee pc or a dell cheapo... ya know? and we are talking for normal ppl and not hax0rz that can put linux on a coffee machine...

7. i totally agree gaming is better played on a console, that was more just a cheap shot at the OP, lol.


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by Nicholas Buenk / September 22, 2008 7:03 PM PDT

1. Macs have no viruses, or next to no viruses. So rare are they that no user ever really needs to worry about encounting them. And it's not a simple matter of low market share, 10%, that's plenty of units out there to target.
2. OS X defrags automatically on file access provided the file is under 20MB
3. Well you finally have a point
4. what?
5. Everyones an elitist in some sense of the word, there's always some group of people you wouldn't want to have much to do with, right?

1. Computers are as important as a house or a car really, I think, yet cost peanuts in comparison. So does it really matter?
2. A reboot away.

It's not like OS X never has problems, but it does tend to be more reliable. It crashes as much as Windows, but it's easier to troubleshoot, less likely to get screwed up. Wink Migration assistant, archive install and disk clone utilities built into the OS mean you can do a reinstall without losing any settings or programs too.

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by robstak / September 23, 2008 10:12 AM PDT
In reply to: Ahh....

1. i think its well known to be market share related, actually.
2. i read the link in the other post, cool, but keep in mind then: macs are defragging whether you want them to or not... poor HDD.
3,4,5. ok.

1. See this is the problem. Sure computers are important, but price premiums reduce the VALUE. I agree you should drop $$ on a computer, but for the same price i can get a macbook, i can get a better equipped pc, and that's essentially irrefutable.
2. inconvenient. other guy had better point... just play xbox... lol.

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by Nicholas Buenk / September 23, 2008 12:19 PM PDT
In reply to: replyyy

1. Ohh I don't think so, OS X has many of the security features Vista has, from the start. Also lacks things like activex.
2. Well it leaves large files alone which should avoid wasting too much time on defragging.

1. Well when macs are first out they are comparable in value to Dell etc. The problem is Apple never reduces prices as the model ages. So it's best to buy when a new model comes out. Wink
2. I don't like console games much, I feel xbox vs pc is a little like xbox vs wii. More complicated and interesting games tend to be on the pc. Just have a home built AMD box for games. Just need to add in a new GPU and CPU every few years, costs little more than a console. Wink The worse part is having to mess around with windows issues and drivers when I just want to play a game...

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New Microsoft ad...kinda like trying to talk to a bully
by rgunther / September 18, 2008 10:09 PM PDT

Yeah...I hate it. With the exception of the introductory scene that almost looks like it's going to introduce a Mac ad, the new ad is clever, but uninteresting. They're clearly a response to the Mac ads, but in a way that's reminiscent of what Mom would tell you to say to a bully at school: "Next time he calls you four-eyes, just tell him you'd rather see what's on the board so you can learn something." Right...that never worked for me either. Got me beat up a lot though. Happy If anything, it seems they've given Apple some interesting fodder for parody.

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New Microsoft ads take aim at "Mac vs. PC".
by wizkids32 / September 19, 2008 7:21 AM PDT

They are different but that guy is not John Hodgman and John is a better PC then this guy is. Still don't get the windows not walls because you can do the same things on the Mac because the Mac's now also can run a Window OS too.

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Where's the beef?
by RobertK2of3 / September 19, 2008 9:25 AM PDT

OK, the ad was nice. Much more direct than the Seinfeld ads, though not as funny. Took a little wind out of Apple's sails, although I doubt half the people in the ad use a computer and would probably be happier with Linux (bearded guy).... or a Mac (I'm talking to you Eva Longoria).

Either way, my main point here is: I don't know what they are advertising. Window? Just Windows in general? I don't see Vista and they probably shouldn't after they insulted everyone in the world's intelligence with that Mojave experiment--nothing like showing yourself to be dishonest and then putting it on TV.

Back to the point though, what, exactly are they advertising? They don't really have a product right now. Vista=mud and they don't want to sell XP anymore. What's the choice? Linux? Mac? Jeez, at least mention Office or show something off.

Something struck me as a bit unfair ripping off John Hodgeman so closely. I guess its legal, because its parody, but it bothered me a bit. Not sure why.

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The ad I'm waiting for
by satoauto / September 19, 2008 1:22 PM PDT
In reply to: Where's the beef?

The ad I'm waiting for is a Steve Jobs (lookalike) doing his typical keynote address with his huge image on the screen behind him.

A girl with a tight windows tanktop runs down the isle and throws a hammer at the screen....

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by mementh / September 20, 2008 7:03 AM PDT
In reply to: The ad I'm waiting for

that would be funny!!!

but then it would be a parody ad at best Sad

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I think it's great
by Slikkster / September 19, 2008 7:49 PM PDT

First of all, it's a direct slap at the dopey Apple ads, and they do it cleverly without being derogatory like Apple does. Plus, it's selling the Windows brand, which is a good idea, too. They don't have to mention Vista at this point. Windows 7 is on the horizon. I see this as a great bridge ad.

What's most important in all of this is that all of the sudden, starting with Seinfeld/Gates, people don't really know what to expect anymore from Microsoft anymore in the marketing arena. And people are talking about it. Imagine if it was just "Vista does this, Vista does that, blah blah". It would be the same old thing. This is kind of a paradigm shift for them. It's about time.

Apple's been distorting the Vista experience as if every single person has problems with Vista--patently absurd and not worthy of a debate. But that's MS's fault for letting it happen. If you let these things go without answer, people will believe them.

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I don't know...
by RobertK2of3 / September 19, 2008 11:47 PM PDT
In reply to: I think it's great

I don't know about Vista. It caused me to buy a Mac (built-in DRM that slows down the OS and dials home when it feels like it), so I've never really used it. These are anti-consumer choices MS made in Vista. They were designed in and I just decided to use an alternative.

My parents-in-law just bought a new HP with Vista and its been a lot of trouble. Installing a printer driver (an HP printer, not some oddball brand) was a fiasco, and now web pages have stopped showing. I have to investigate, but they ran 98 and XP for years without OS trouble.

I'm beginning to think Vista really is as bad as they say. Sure, not every-single person has problems, but word-of-mouth is powerful.

Back to the topic though, Windows 7 is estimated for 2010. They have no product to sell. Not sure what they are advertising, besides "we're still here".

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Yet more anectotal stuff which really means nothing
by Slikkster / September 20, 2008 3:06 AM PDT
In reply to: I don't know...

Sorry about whatever issues you/parents are having, but seriously, that's hardly the type of evidence one would use to throw out the baby with the bathwater. You must have missed this giant thread a short while back that has some 679 posts in it about primarily happy Vista users:;forums06

Sure, there are some negative posts in it, too, but by and large it's populated with Vista users who somehow, someway actually like it. Imagine that.

I'm sure there are very easy answers for the issues you're having, and where the web browser is concerned, who knows what caused that? But here's a very easy repair to try:

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May be nothing
by RobertK2of3 / September 20, 2008 2:40 PM PDT

It may be nothing in this case, but I'm starting to get suspicious. I'm pretty tech savvy and I know that when something goes wrong with your computer, you fix it. People complain, but if you fix the problem, or show them how, the complaining stops. Its just the way computers are. Vista, XP, OSX, Linux, they all have issues like this. I don't really believe that Vista doesn't work.

But, in the back of my mind, I'm getting the creepy feeling that Vista does not work as well as XP did, and the more complaining I hear, the more I think maybe there is something to this Vista-bashing.

Anecdotal stuff is not nothing. Anecdotal stuff causes word-of-mouth, which causes opinion leaders to make recommendations, which leads to general consensus. Anecdotal is MS's customers having trouble, maybe more trouble than before--all they care about is that their computer works.

Anecdotal stuff is Microsoft's #1 problem right now. Its an image problem and it stems from "this computer dude at work said Vista was bad" and "My brother-in-law said he tried to install Vista, but his printers didn't work, so he went back to XP".

I'm glad it works for some people, I hope the hype is just hype, but right now, MS has sort of abandoned Vista (in spirit anyway) and don't have a product to push. Not sure what the ads are for.

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