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Summary:

Apple recently introduced two brand new TV commercials, currently airing on U.S. cable and network television, that continue the “There’s an app for that” series of ads. The two new spots, called “Share” and “Travel,” both highlight features common to all currently sold iPhone models, instead […]

Apple recently introduced two brand new TV commercials, currently airing on U.S. cable and network television, that continue the “There’s an app for that” series of ads. The two new spots, called “Share” and “Travel,” both highlight features common to all currently sold iPhone models, instead of just the newer 3GS.

In “Share,” the focus is squarely on the new peer to peer connectivity introduced in OS 3.0 that allows iPhones in close proximity to discover each other for multiplayer gaming and sharing. The ad features three apps that use peer to peer in different ways. Mover (free, iTunes link) allows image sharing using an innovative and well-designed interface tailored to the iPhone’s touchscreen controls. Bump (free, iTunes link) allows contact info exchange, and is the app that won Apple’s billionth app downloaded contest. Finally, EA’s Scrabble ($4.99, iTunes link) demonstrates the iPhone’s multiplayer gaming capabilities.

“Travel” provides a selection of apps handy for the globe-trotting iPhone owner. I was expecting Apple to throw in at least one that takes advantage of the new compass features in the 3GS, but they clearly wanted to stick to apps that would work on both the 3G and the 3GS. Rick Steves’ Historic Paris Walk ($4.99, iTunes link) is the first featured app, which provides a guided, narrated tour of the celebrated European capital. Next up is Paris Metro ’09 ($4.99, iTunes link), which provides a transit map for the Paris underground. Finally, Freeverse’s Postman ($1.99, iTunes link) allows you to create and send custom postcards using photos in your album or that you take with your iPhone’s camera.

Apple clearly wants to focus more on what both currently available iPhone generations can do, rather than on the distinguishing features of the new 3GS. Since they’ve already tried to set up that distinction in the past, I think it’s a good strategy to just try to market a unified iPhone brand and let consumers make their own choices.

This series of ads continues to be a great way to show off the iPhone’s flexibility to consumers who may not be aware of its capabilities, but I’m surprised we haven’t yet seen a fan-made parody featuring a list of unfairly rejected or hamstringed apps, i.e., “Want to use Google Voice to connect with friends and family? There’s no app for that.” or “Want to stream your own, fairly acquired media from your home Slingbox over 3G whose usage you pay for? There’s no app for that.”

Someone make it happen. And please, Apple, by all means, continue to use Matt Costa’s Mr. Pitiful, because even just hearing the instrumental intro to that song has it stuck in my head for days, which is definitely a good thing.

  1. I love how you say:

    “Want to stream your own, fairly acquired media from your home Slingbox over 3G whose usage you pay for? There’s no app for that.”

    Instead of saying media you OWN. Smart ;) You’re licensed to that use that content, and might I add, in certain ways (because of big Musical/Movie brother). But you’re not the OWNER of that content :) So I could see why Sling wouldn’t be allowed on there.

    “Want to use Google Voice to connect with friends and family? There’s no app for that.”

    Tell me again why you payed for an iPhone again? And on top of that AT&T’s ridiculous data/iPhone cellular plan?

    As long as this world runs on Money, it’ll never be as awesome it will ever be.

    Share
    1. I don’t disagree with your unhappiness about the restrictions, but I think I disagree with your conclusion about money and awesome.

      I do not own an iPhone (yet). Can you direct me to a unit that I can buy that can do the things you’re asking for, making life even more awesome than with the iPhone?

      Share
    2. I hate it when people bitch about the 2 things the iPhone can’t do, and suddenly forget about the other 64,998 things it can do.

      Share
    3. @ryemac3

      +1 to that. People are way too political towards devices/platforms.

      Share
    4. @Teslanaut

      don’t applaud that comment about the 64998 useful apps. how many fart/barf/funny noise apps are there??? probably 64000. The truly useful apps are in Cydia! and most are free. (Backgrounder, SBSettings are the top)

      It is really a chore trying to find a USEFUL app at the appstore. It just happens that probably THE most revolutionary and useful apps (the GV ones) are now gone (unless you use Cydia ;) )

      By your analogy, let’s say the iPhone had an app that turned water to wine or milk to cheese and the appstore booted it. Wouldn’t you be majorly disappointed by this? Oh wait, you would be happy with the thousands of fart apps that give you jollies. Oh well. To each their own.

      Share
    5. “don’t applaud that comment about the 64998 useful apps. how many fart/barf/funny noise apps are there??? probably 64000. The truly useful apps are in Cydia! and most are free. (Backgrounder, SBSettings are the top)”

      There aren’t actually as many fart apps as you actually think there are. I just did a search on App Shopper for the word “Fart”. There are only 467 entries. That’s a tiny number compared to the actual amount in the App Store. I’m actually really disappointed by the Jailbreak community. I used to jailbreak, back in the 1.1.x days. When it was actually a thrill to see these apps & modifications. But now? Most have either moved onto the App Store or just given up entirely. Jailbreaking has only become useful if you own an iPhone. As an iPod touch user myself, its gimped, useless. As for Backgrounder & Sbsettings, I woulds say SBSettings is probably actually useful. Backgrounder? Not so much. If you really think about it, there really isn’t much you want to put into the background. Maybe Pandora comes to mind but not much else.

      “It is really a chore trying to find a USEFUL app at the appstore. It just happens that probably THE most revolutionary and useful apps (the GV ones) are now gone (unless you use Cydia ;) )”

      How was GV Mobile revolutionary? I don’t understand. Another way to call/text people with another number that consolidates devices. I guess Free voicemail is cool. I have Google Voice and I’ve never used it. I’ve had it since it was still Grand Central. Not once have I used it. Honestly, if you have an iPhone, there really isn’t any point to Google Voice. iPod touch, maybe.

      “By your analogy, let’s say the iPhone had an app that turned water to wine or milk to cheese and the appstore booted it. Wouldn’t you be majorly disappointed by this? Oh wait, you would be happy with the thousands of fart apps that give you jollies. Oh well. To each their own.”

      Which analogy? The sling player one? You have to see/have both sides to everything. Sure it sucks that Apple booted off GV Mobile or, “Water to Wine”, if we use your example, but you can’t dismiss all the other great apps out there. The whole “Fart Apps” argument is kinda played out. It was a fad, and now its pretty much died down.

      Share
  2. Christian Harrison Tuesday, August 4, 2009

    Love my iPhone … Apple’s continued poor management of the iPhone developer stream, not so much.

    And on the sharing: sharing contacts should be a built-in feature. I should never have to get a colleague to download a program just to share my contact info. Grr.

    Share
    1. you can share contacts via mms, or email, what program does your colleague need to download? That app is just a fancy way of doing it over bluetooth. No one says you have to do it that way.

      Share
  3. Interesting to see they picked Paris in a U.S. ad. Shouldn’t they have mentioned how much it cost you to send that postcard from Paris?

    Share
  4. are you sure the song in the iphone ads arent The Submarines – You Me & The Bourgeoisie http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSS8ub5x0G0

    Share
    1. Yes, that’s the old run of spots…

      new ones all use Matt Costa “Mr Pitiful”

      start 20 seconds in

      Share
  5. Yet again the Apple pulls another rabbit out of the hat. I love this stuff so much! Just wish they would sort out the WiFi rabbit that they pulled out and then shit with OS 3.0

    Share
  6. Jim Ellsworth Sunday, August 30, 2009

    As a “fogey” (pre-geezer era), I love your new travel ap with Rick Steves. We travel a in Europe for a month each year and always consult his guides. Having an electronic way to take some of the content with us is a real reason to get an IPod. I also like your ad for the IPhone3GS featuring a fine young man as a spokesperson. The ad is clear and informative and the content is “available” even to an early pc/Mac person.

    I am amazed that these phones can do so much and contain it all in such a small package.

    Share
  7. i like much iphone i thinkthe best cell phone i want our link website wwww.tourinegypt.net

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