If You Don’t Have an iPhone: New iPhone 4 Ads Draw a Line in the Sand

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It may be obvious to most people, but an Android is just not an iPhone.  Not even close.

Now that we have seen the details of the iOS 5 and iCloud from this year's World Wide Developer's Conference keynote address, we know that Apple is trying to carve out a niche for iDevices that will keep users in a permanent network.  iMessages will keep them chatting with each other, Reminders drives GPS and scheduling in a way no one had ever dreamed, and iCloud gives you cloud storage in a way that it would be very difficult to jump ship to another type of phone or tablet.  The reality is that there were these types of "defining features" on the iPhone 4, but now Apple just wants to rub it in.

The newest iPhone 4 ads focus on the phrase, "If you don't have an iPhone, you don't have," leading to two defining features: Airplay and FaceTime.  Both of these features are unique both to the iOS 4 and only available with the iPhone or newest iPod Touch and iPad 2.  FaceTime, which really was the defining element for communication with the iPhone 4 release, is a video chat service that allows for mobile video communication between iDevice owners.  The less used Airplay is used to essentially broadcast content to other devices, such as music over to a stereo.  A third ad is also making its way focusing on the e-book reading feature iBooks, which may be of more interest right now that books were recently added to iTunes.


All three of these features are unique to the iOS, though iBooks really is not unlike those available on actual e-readers and different tablets.  The problem here is that both FaceTime and Airplay tend to be somewhat difficult to use as standard.  Airplay, for example, requires a second device that recognizes and uses Airplay.  This is relatively uncommon among most consumer devices, and therefore Airplay simply lays in the waits until its will become useful.  FaceTime is an amazing addition, but still requires a hard Wifi connection and therefore is much less mobile than it is portrayed.

No matter what it maintains a general perception about the iOS, which is that it stands in a class of its own.  Even the recent iPad ads support this idea where they bring about the concept that what it has achieved was thought impossible on a tablet.  With the kind of market share the iPad has amongst tablets it is clear that statements like that are implicit and do not necessarily need to be said.  In these new ads they are clearly setting up for a whole new line of features that are intended to make the iPhone appear as something more than a phone, the iPad as more than a tablet, and the iPod Touch as more than an MP3 player.  Now that they are developing their own category they will be less apt to openly compete with Android products, and when the newest models are released in September and the following February the market will be inherently tipped toward their favor.  In all this it may not matter that most people can't look at their photos on their television through Airplay, and even if you could you probably wouldn't want to.



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