Microsoft airs first Surface ad as part of $1B Windows 8 marketing campaign

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Microsoft on Monday will kick off an advertising blitz for its Surface tablet, the software company's first-ever foray into the computer hardware making business, with a commercial set to air during ESPN's Monday Night Football.

Surface Ad
Source: Microsoft


First spotted by The Verge, the commercial is part of Microsoft's huge $1 billion Windows 8 ad campaign, which began in earnest on Sunday ahead of the new operating system's launch on Oct. 26.

With the first Surface spot, Microsoft focused on the "clicking" noise made when a user attaches the tablet's magnetic keyboard-cum-cover, as well as the soft snapping sound heard when the unit's kickstand is opened and closed. The commercial is more of an introduction to the device than a spec-heavy listing of features, perhaps meant as a first step to acclimate consumers to the idea that Microsoft is now entering the hardware market.

Taking more than a little inspiration from successful iPod commercials, the ad features a troupe of dancers who manipulate the device to create a drum break-like beat that slowly builds to a crescendo of feverish clicking and snapping.

Not much is shown off in the way of device specs, or even the ARM-based Windows RT version of Microsoft's new operating system powering the Surface. There are a few glimpses of the homescreen and a few live tiles, but the commercial is mostly a teaser.





Earlier in October, Microsoft started a guerrilla marketing campaign close to a Chicago area Apple Store, drawing "graffiti style" Surface representations on the brick wall of a nearby car washing establishment.

Along with the new Surface commercial, Microsoft also announced the Xbox Music service, a direct competitor to Apple's iTunes that will be available on Windows 8 PCs, Windows Phone 8 and the Xbox 360.

The Redmond, Washington, company is scheduled to launch Windows 8 alongside alongside the ARM-powered version of its Surface tablet on Oct. 26.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 145
    iqatedoiqatedo Posts: 1,746member


    Look! Microsoft is making a tablet... and doing music!  Has anyone seen this done before? image

  • Reply 2 of 145


  • Reply 3 of 145
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member


    That is simply awful. 

  • Reply 4 of 145


    It has a keyboard cum cover?!


     


    I ain't touching it without latex gloves.

  • Reply 5 of 145
    davegeedavegee Posts: 2,765member
    [QUOTE]Microsoft on Monday will kick off an advertising blitz for its Surface tablet, the software company's first-ever foray into the hardware making business, with a commercial set to air during ESPN's Monday Night Football.[/QUOTE]

    First ever foray??

    The author of this article needs to do some research I'd say.
  • Reply 6 of 145
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    I don't think it's a good ad. It's fine to have an ad that doesn't show how the device can useful after you'v established product and market. Exhibit 1: The iconic silhouette iPod ads.
  • Reply 7 of 145


    It's like High School Musical.


     


    … But worse.


     


    "It's hard to believe


    That I couldn't see


    How good this tablet was beside me!



    This touchscreen's like no other


    I want you to know!

    I've never had someone


    Who let me touch you… the way you do!"


     


    Er, that got a little… 

  • Reply 8 of 145
    galleygalley Posts: 971member
    That hipster dude needs to wash his hair, and those schoolgirls were downright creepy!
  • Reply 9 of 145

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Napoleon_PhoneApart View Post


    It has a keyboard cum cover?!


     


    I ain't touching it without latex gloves.



     


    The keyboard is ready for one-handed web browsing sessions.

  • Reply 10 of 145
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,951member
    davegee wrote: »
    First ever foray??
    The author of this article needs to do some research I'd say.

    Yep. Mice since Windows 1.0, I think. Then there's UltimateTV. They did network cards and keyboards. Zune. Plus that obscure XBox that nobody ever heard of and nobody ever played.
  • Reply 11 of 145

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    That is simply awful. 



     


    This ad reveals Microsoft deepest, darkest, tablet insecurities.

  • Reply 12 of 145
    bageljoeybageljoey Posts: 1,972member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post



    I don't think it's a good ad. It's fine to have an ad that doesn't show how the device can useful after you'v established product and market. Exhibit 1: The iconic silhouette iPod ads.


    In principle I agree with you.  However, MS needs to get people to notice that they are entering this market.  


     


    Everybody knows Apple owns the market and there are several players scraping sales at the margins.  I don't think it is unreasonable to try to attach your product to some pizzazz _before_ it gets compared to the standard.  If they start out by trying to make it look useful, they are probably already lost (because if people want useful, they may as well get an iPad).  

  • Reply 13 of 145
    Having all those Surfaces flying around is good for when you sit down to watch some content and then need another Surface because the one you were using crashed.

    It's like a laptop, but you can't use it on your lap, only on a flat surface!
  • Reply 14 of 145
    aluopaluop Posts: 57member


    MS in 2011: ”We won’t do anything in the tablet market unless we can be distinctive,”

  • Reply 15 of 145
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    bageljoey wrote: »
    In principle I agree with you.  However, MS needs to get people to notice that they are entering this market.  

    Everybody knows Apple owns the market and there are several players scraping sales at the margins.  I don't think it is unreasonable to try to attach your product to some pizzazz _before_ it gets compared to the standard.  If they start out by trying to make it look useful, they are probably already lost (because if people want useful, they may as well get an iPad).  

    If the Surface becomes a success and gains a respectable hold on the tablet market in a way WinPh has yet to capture then you'll have a guaranteed mea culpa from me. Outside of that I'd say it's debatable. I think you make a solid counter-argument but I still think MS should have come out with solid "this is how you use this device" ads, not this empty razzmatazz*.



    * That word doesn't get used enough.
  • Reply 16 of 145
    To me Microsoft is doing an amazing job to put out competition. Look at the people making jokes in this thread let me make it clear if you can go back when they introduced the Xbox..now its one of the most popular gaming systems. I'm sorry but the iPad mini should of had never been trying to come out because it will flop miserably.
  • Reply 17 of 145
    Haha, awesome commercial. Still remains to see if it's a useful device. I'll never change, I don't even use my iPad that much. MacBook Pro ftw! ^^
  • Reply 18 of 145
    focherfocher Posts: 687member
    And the question remains.

    How much?
  • Reply 19 of 145
    arlorarlor Posts: 529member


    I read the first 13 comments before watching the ad. 


     


    And it's not nearly as bad as I expected. I thought there'd be singing after the High School Musical reference, but it's just a reasonably catchy instrumental.


     


    It's a memorable ad, and it serves to demonstrate the two key physical differentiating factors from the iPad just fine. Software can come later, and probably won't be nearly as much of a selling point.


     


    If the screen really shows up that well in bright sunlight, I'm impressed. But I suspect they juiced the screen images in post. 


     


    Edit: Also, if those schoolgirls were creepy, you may be creepy. They were hardly salaciously filmed. 

  • Reply 20 of 145
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    techy93 wrote: »
    A lot of haters over the surface. To me Microsoft is doing an amazing job to put out competition and let me just reassure you that the iPad mini will flop. *Shrugs*

    I'll bet you a smaller Apple tablet to a MS Surface that the smaller Apple Tablet will outsell the MS Surface within it's first (you choose the time frame) on the market.
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