Droid Attacks iPhone

By  |  Saturday, October 17, 2009 at 10:56 pm

Verizon DroidVerizon Wireless, which recently announced it was hopping on the Android smartphone OS bandwagon big time, has started whetting our appetite for its first Android phone. It’s launched a TV ad for the phone, the Droid, and a teaser site. And so far, it’s mostly promoting the phone by bashing the iPhone, with pseudo-Apple text pointing out that “iDont” have a physical keyboard, (third-party) multitasking, a five-megapixel camera, much in the way of customization options, widgets, “open development,” the ability to take photos in the dark, or a removable battery. The Droid (whose name is licensed from Mr. Lucas) presumably has all of the above.

It’s an entertainingly combative ad, and a pretty effective one given that it doesn’t even show the phone (which apparently looks like this). Of course, the fact that the Droid beats the iPhone on a number of spec- and feature-related fronts doesn’t make it a breakthrough. It’s quite common for smartphones to theoretically trump the iPhone in multiple ways, but the iPhone’s level of hardware/software/service integration and the vast quantity of available apps remain unique. No other phone is going to catch up with the iPhone’s software catalog anytime soon, so if I were an Apple competitor, I’d concentrate on trying to vaunt into the same league in terms of integration. Not that that’ll be easy. The Droid arrives next month, so we won’t have to wait long to judge it.

The other interesting question about the Droid commercial is this: Does all its cheeky iPhone-bashing signal that Verizon has no plans to sell the iPhone anytime soon? It not only mocks the phone but mocks Apple in a way that suggests that it doesn’t plan to go into business with it, despite rumors. I took the implied message of the ad as being something like this: “Yes, we know that a lot of people want a Verizon iPhone, but hold on–we’re going to have a smartphone that’s better than an iPhone.”

(Then again, I’m fascinated by this Verizon ad that says a non-Verizon BlackBerry is a paperweight–it might be an effective ad, but it seems like an odd thing to do to BlackBerry maker and Verizon partner RIM.)

Anyhow, here’s the “iDon’t” ad:

 
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11 Comments For This Post

  1. Tech Says:

    lol that’s a funny ad. Pretty effective though.

  2. Backlin Says:

    I still like Verizon’s “If the iDoesn’t see it, what does?” ad. I was expecting these anti-Apple ads to come out around the 3G’s time, but better late than never iGuess…

    Great, now I’m doing it!

  3. Marc Says:

    Great advert.. The phone will have to be good to dent the iPhone.. but it’s going to happen soon I think.

  4. Joe Says:

    I can’t wait until Apple sues their butts and all the money they spent is wasted.

    It is not correct to claim that the iPhone doesn’t run multiple apps – it does. Several of the other claims are wrong, too.

  5. EB Says:

    Best response from Apple would be:

    iDon’t suck

    To be honest, the single thing that needs fixing in the iPhone (well, for me and my iPhone) is no background audio streaming. For everything else, notification and good quality persistence take care of everything else (some people may want background tracking vis-a-vie social networking, so I can see that as a complaint, I just don’t care, and the solution I mention works for that as well).
    Anyway, the point is that with an < 30 second jailbreak, and then the easy install of backgrounder, a free app, I get the much valued "background app" and now can stream all my audio apps while doing other stuff on the iPhone. Other than that, all other complaints are really device complaints, and you can always have devices with more "features". There are plenty of phones with more "features" then iPhones. That does not really mean much.

    Not really trying to apologize for the iPhone, since Apple needs to open up the phone to 3rd party background tasks. If they do, I doubt they ever will for the 2G and 3G and start with the 3Gs (twice as much RAM, providing as much as 5 X more RAM for applications).

  6. Tom B Says:

    ” The phone will have to be good to dent the iPhone..”

    It won’t be; Verizon always cripples their phones.

  7. Joe Futral Says:

    The only problem with the ad is most of the points either have no meaning to, well, most anyone (“open development” is industry buzz-speak and quite frankly hasn’t hurt the iPhone, never mind the relative nature of what that really means). And the other points just don’t matter (Widgets??? Really???). IPhone’s success already disproves most of the commercial.

    They would do better focusing on what the Droid phone is rather than what the iPhone “isn’t”. When you define yourself against something else’s negative, you are at the mercy of the “other” and what it is or isn’t. Even Apple tends to make that mistake in the Mac/PC ads. They also do a better job of turning it around to show what that means to the customer.

    Joe

  8. James Katt Says:

    That is an AWFUL ad.
    It may use the term “iDroid”. But that term doesn’t necessarily mean iPhone.
    If anything, it is attacking itself – which is not necessarily a phone.

    When it points out a missing feature, what is interesting is that that feature isn’t important to users of the iPhone. This is why I did not associate the ad with the iPhone at all.

  9. Budi Says:

    You should read this :
    http://www.businessinsider.com/verizon-and-googles-2009-10

  10. Denise Says:

    When a device has to attack other phones… and tells very little about itself… that’s a very bad sign.

    Why can’t the Droid stand on its own?

  11. Katie, Uverse Says:

    This is going to be great, at least for the consumer. But this phone have to be really good to compete with iPhone. They should have done this long time ago.

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