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Apple Launches New Holiday-Themed 'Misunderstood' iPhone 5s Commercial

Apple today released a new television ad for the holidays, featuring the company's flagship iPhone 5s capturing and sharing holiday memories in the form of a video shared over Apple's AirPlay.

The song "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" plays in the background as the iPhone 5s is used to capture video of a family engaging in holiday activities like decorating Christmas cookies, participating in a snowball fight, and decorating a Christmas tree. Later in the commercial, the video footage is played back to the family over AirPlay. "Happy Holidays" is displayed at the end of the video.


Apple historically releases a new video during each holiday season and in 2012, the company focused on the iPad and FaceTime. In 2011, the holiday commercial featured Santa using Siri on an iPhone 4s. While those previous videos were more product focused, the newest holiday ad focuses on iPhone users and the way their devices enhance their lives.

Update: A Tweet from Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller highlighting the new ad:


Update 2: In addition to the commercial, Apple has posted the full holiday video in the ad on its YouTube page. According to the video's description, the "Harris family home movie" was shot entirely on the iPhone 5s.

Top Rated Comments

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8 months ago

It's really heartwarming to watch these "people" slash tv commercial stand-ins focusing on their iPhones instead of each other. Is this an inadvertent parody?

Pathetic. The Apple-led new world is loathsome. "It's just like life, i'dnt it?"


You obviously didnt understand the commercial. It appears that the teen is ignoring the family the entire time playing on his phone. In actuality he is recording a video for his family to show how much he cares about them. Stop being so cynical.
Rating: 59 Votes
8 months ago
I like it. I love Apple's commercials lately. It shows how their products are truly enriching peoples lives. While all their competitors (Samsung, Amazon, Microsoft, etc) commercials have been about bashing Apple's products instead of focusing on their own. I'm glad Apple is above those childish games :apple:
Rating: 30 Votes
8 months ago
Great ad, I like it.

I do find it interesting, though, that the whole ad focused around Christmas (the song, the Christmas tree, etc.) but at the end they went the the more all-inclusive Happy Holidays.
Rating: 25 Votes
8 months ago
Just saw that on NBC in between The Voice. At first I thought it was a Subaru commercial then realized it was an Apple commercial. Almost made me a little teary eyed!

Dam you, marketing people!
Rating: 20 Votes
8 months ago

Great ad, I like it.

I do find it interesting, though, that the whole ad focused around Christmas (the song, the Christmas tree, etc.) but at the end they went the the "politically correct" Happy Holidays.


I never understand why some in the "war on Christmas" crowd object to the "Happy Holidays" as anything more than an accurate description of the season. Even most Christian Americans celebrate multiple holiday during the season, including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Eve and Day! Then, of course, the term Happy Holidays is more inclusive of the holidays celebrated by many other Americans during this holiday. "Happy Holidays" is not a demonstration of "politically correct" cowardice but, rather, is just a more accurate salutation.

Geez, happy holidays! :-)
Rating: 19 Votes
8 months ago

It's really heartwarming to watch these "people" slash tv commercial stand-ins focusing on their iPhones instead of each other. Is this an inadvertent parody?

Pathetic. The Apple-led new world is loathsome. "It's just like life, i'dnt it?"


If you have nothing good to say then......:p
Rating: 19 Votes
8 months ago
MY FAVORITE TIME OF THE YEAR.

In before the crowd--Merry Christmas everyone! :)
Rating: 17 Votes
8 months ago

You obviously didnt understand the commercial. It appears that the teen is ignoring the family the entire time playing on his phone. In actuality he is recording a video for his family to show how much he cares about them. Stop being so cynical.


That's the way I took it as well. I thought the ad was very well done.

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Sorry but I really did not like this ad. The ad highlighted a kid that was not participating in the family holiday fun. Instead he was messing around with his phone, seemingly ignoring the people around him and the interaction they were seeking from him. Sure in the end he was actually making a video rather than playing Candy Crush.

Seemed a little off base for Apple to be highlight exactly what is most irritating about cell phones. Showing people with their heads stuck in the phone rather than interacting with others around them. In other ads Apple has highlighted how the phone can be used to increase connections with people - FaceTime. In this ad Apple showed someone ignoring human interaction to use his phone.


From the reaction from people on MR, I would say that you hold a minority opinion. I actually thought the ad showed how technology can bring people together, capture amazing moments, and bridge the generation gap. I think this ad actually shows the non-irritating side of cell phones! :)
Rating: 14 Votes
8 months ago
According to Phil Schiller's tweet the title of the ad is "misunderstood". Based on some of the comments here I'd say that was an apt title. :)
Rating: 13 Votes
8 months ago
Although I miss Apple's old sense of humour in their marketing, this is a really nice ad.

I love how they are not saying "look if you have an iPhone you will be the most popular person in the world and have heaps of gorgeous model friends", instead they see that many great artists and creators are introverted and might not excel in social situations but can still contribute something amazing that brings people together in a nice moment.
Rating: 11 Votes

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