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tech wars

Can An iPhone On Steroids Eliminate The Competition?

Posted by Stephanie Startz on December 1, 2009 07:01 PM

What’s better than a robot phone? How about a phone on steroids?

Motorola may have won the recent brand loyalty battle, but the war is far from over.  Apple is expected to introduce a new challenger into the smartphone thunderdome in 2010, as reports circulate of a new iPhone, currently in beta form, spotted in the wild.

Giving weight to the rumors is the recent tip provided to the MacRumors web site by iPhone App developer Pandav. Pandav claims that a device named “iPhone3,1” was found in their usage records after accessing the developer’s iBART application. iBart is a guide to the San Francisco area public transport system, in Cupertino-based Apple's vicinity. MacRumors expects the new phone to release in mid-2010, as it is following a similar schedule to the iPhone2,1. It too was spotted during testing about eight months before its release, in October 2008, according to Pandav.

Speculation about the iPhone’s new processor capacity is abundant. Business web site 24/7 Wall St is touting the third-generation smartphone as an “iPhone-on-steroids,” expecting it to be a game changer not only for the smartphone industry, but to pose a major challenge to netbooks with its ramped-up super processor.Continue reading...

mobile brands

Men Boost Motorola Over Apple In Brand Loyalty

Posted by Stephanie Startz on November 25, 2009 06:41 PM

Motorola knows what boys like, Motorola knows what guys want. Motorola’s milkshake brings all the boys to the yard. And they’re like, “You’re better than Apple. Yeah, you’re better than Apple.”

Thanks to the release of the Droid smartphone, Motorola has surged past Apple in brand loyalty polling among men ages 18–34.

Recently released tracking data from YouGov’s BrandIndex shows Apple dropping from a high of 48.1 to 22 in the month of November. Motorola, during the same timeframe, has remained relatively stable with a BrandIndex score fluctuating between 32.3 and 29.3. Blackberry continues to sink with a score below 10.Continue reading...

truth in advertising

Escalating Ad Wars Lead To The Courtroom

Posted by Abe Sauer on November 23, 2009 12:54 PM

After grabbing myself a slice at World-Famous Original Ray's Pizza, I wanted to find all the news that was fit to print, and was surprised by a New York Times piece on the sharp increase in brands suing each other over false claims.

So far, 2009 has seen 82 formal complaints over ad claims, according to The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, on track to exceed last year’s record of 84 challenges, up almost 40% from four years ago.

While the "studies show" tactic of demonstrating one brand's superiority over competitors is an ad cliché, those ads typically have used "other leading brands" as their contrast. Now, increasingly ruthless competition has seen brands outright naming, and denouncing, competitors. These lawsuits include DirectTV's claim about Charter Communication's service. Or AT&T's complaint, after Verizon Wireless attacked their spotty coverage with their mocking tagline, "There's a map for that."Continue reading...

tech wars

AT&T Swings Back At Verizon Wireless, Misses

Posted by Stephanie Startz on November 20, 2009 06:46 PM

What do you do when your brand is slammed repeatedly by the competition?

If you're AT&T, you file a lawsuit, alleging that Verizon Wireless is misleading consumers with their "There's a map for that" ads.

When that fails, you go to Plan B.

In this case Plan B involves Luke Wilson, magnets, an empty loft and a chalk board. It's not quite what Sonny Corleone had in mind when he instructed you to "go to the mattresses," but it's proactive nonetheless. (Recruiting an unlikely spokesman in Luke Wilson has us scratching our heads. He is America's supportive boyfriend, but really: Luke Wilson?)Continue reading...

tech fail

E-Reader Shortage Is Latest Sony Misstep

Posted by Anthony Zumpano on November 19, 2009 05:36 PM

Another holiday season, another supply-and-demand problem for Sony. The beleaguered brand is revamping its marketing strategy, but a multimillion-dollar ad campaign can’t solve a product shortage that turns away customers who are dying to give you their money.

In 2000, it was the PlayStation 2. In 2005, the PlayStation Portable. In 2006, the PlayStation 3. This year, it’s the Sony e-Reader that many people want, but few will be able to get in time for the holidays. Once again, the Wall Street Journal notes, Sony failed to navigate “the difficulties of forecasting orders and coordinating a supply chain that includes component makers, manufacturing services and others.”

These shortages fuel conspiracy theories that Sony and Nintendo, whose Wii supplies seem to run short every year, simply pull back on production to create hype. But while having a product so in-demand that people will (literally) fight for it might boost the brand’s cachet, does it help the bottom line when said product – whether it’s Wiis or waffles – is out of stock? The risk is that disappointed and mall-weary shoppers mayget angry at the brand – and sometimes go with a competitor.Continue reading...

tech wars

Verizon's Droid Ads Pull No Punches

Posted by Stephanie Startz on November 10, 2009 05:49 PM

The future is now! And by Verizon’s measure, the future is an industrial wasteland where AT&T service fails you and the iPhone is a useless vanity device.

Debuting last night, the newest ad from the wireless provider packs a punch. Verizon continues their negative campaign against the iPhone and AT&T, calling the iPhone a “semi-functional, giggling-brat-vanity,” and features a compacter crushing crystal encrusted Apple devices. Ouch.

In between shots of boxers, robots and a bustling factory, Verizon boasts that the Droid is a smartphone that “does.” The aggressively masculine ad practically grows chest hair.Continue reading...

tech champs

Strong Sales: The Force Is With Google, Motorola and Verizon's Droid

Posted by Stephanie Startz on November 9, 2009 03:46 PM

The Droid has finally landed in Verizon Wireless stores and the force is with this smartphone.

Apparently, these are the Droids you're looking for.

The marketing alliance of Verizon, Google and Motorola has made the Droid's debut nearly impossible to miss. And Verizon hasn’t even warmed up yet. AdAge reports that Verizon will spend $100 million in marketing the Droid before the end of the year, the brand's biggest spending push ever, with new ads debuting tonight.Continue reading...

brand news

Headline Roundup: It's Ooo-prr-aah!

Posted by Stephanie Startz on November 6, 2009 07:14 AM

It's finally here! The Droid has landed! [PC World]

Will Oprah move her show to her cable network? [NY Times]

Unilever may cut prices, denies interest in Cadbury. [Times of London]

Walt Disney's Florida sports complex gets ESPN rebrand. [NY Times]

Starbucks will offer Seattle's Best coffee in Subway shops. [Seattle Times]

Verizon Wireless claims AT&T lawsuit has "no merit." [BrandWeek]

Three Fiat cars will be sold under the Chrysler brand. [NY Times]

(More headlines: New LA Times website, Izod sponsors IndyCar.)Continue reading...

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