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Phones

Samsung's first Galaxy S9 ad doesn't think very different

Commentary: It's happy, the music is snappy, but the first Galaxy S9 ad doesn't show much imagination.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


s9ad1

Remind you of any Apple ads you've seen lately?

Samsung/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Do you feel uplifted?

Has the reveal of Samsung's Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus brought you closer to telephonic rapture?

Or does it look and feel like the S8 with a new bell here, a new whistle there and, hey, still a headphone jack?

It's interesting that the Korean company has chosen not to wax hyperbolic about the new phones.

Its first ad for the S9 is everything you might expect, but very little more. 

There's a happy atmosphere and pulsating music. And the theme, in Samsung's words on YouTube, is "The Camera. Reimagined."

It's curious how phones have become cameras with web searching capabilities attached. They're less communication tools, it seems, than facilitators of self-regard.

Here, the ad glories in the variable aperture camera and the long, loving slo-mo capabilities.

Then there's the, to my mind, rather prosaic animated emojis, which feel painfully rudimentary.

It doesn't bear great comparison with the way Apple has presented its Animojis, where, in one ad, poop got to sing.

"It's not just a camera. It reimagines what a camera can do," says the ad. Ah, so it's a very good camera.

Samsung didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

The positive here is that the company hasn't tried to overpromise, which is such a temptation to marketing departments desperate to keep their jobs.

As my colleague Shara Tibken explained, the company will likely become a little more racy later in the year.

For now, it's thinking new, but not very different. But wait till it's ready with its promised foldable phone

Now that should deserve a far more, um, imaginative ad.

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