First Xbox One TV Spot Forgets About Games

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First Xbox One TV Spot Forgets About Games

Microsoft's new football-centric Xbox One ad focuses on Skype and fantasy football but excludes videogames.

Back when the Xbox One was originally announced there were some who took issue with the fact that Microsoft's presentation of its new gaming console was somewhat light on actual games. In the months since, the company has made some arguable moves to rectify this. That said, if the console's first North American TV spot is any indicator, it may still have some lessons to learn. While the ad does a fine job of highlighting features like fantasy football, Skype, personalized highlights and the ability to watch football games through the console, videogames aren't mentioned once during the course of its thirty-one second run time.

Now granted, the point of this particular ad is to highlight the Xbox One's football related functionality to capitalize on the start of the NFL's new season. That's perfectly understandable, especially considering the fact that Microsoft has spent considerable oodles of money to secure a partnership with the NFL. That being the case, it takes an arguable PR risk in excluding games completely from ads like this. This is potentially exacerbated when you consider that many of the features boasted by the ad are things that a lot of people already have access to. Personally, I'm not going to shell out $500 for fantasy football and Skype. The promise of a new, more powerful game console, however? That's appealing. Then again, I live in a fairly game-centric bubble. What do you think? Did Microsoft mess up with this ad or did it score a touchdown?

Source: YouTube via IGN

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My guess is that they consider that those who want it for a game console already knows enough to have made up their mind and now they're trying to focus on the audience who might be more interested in the TV, sport and communication features. I guess it kinda makes sense from some point of view. Still, I am not sure if there's really an audience who doesn't want games who would buy the thing though.

It's catering very heavily to the fans of NFL, who I doubt will buy an XB1 just for this. Understandable, but misguided on their part. Even a glimpse of a Madden cover would be something.

In terms of sport, its perfect. I enjoy the NFL as much as the next person (COME ON GRONK!!). I'm not buying the XBone but I'm still with the bleating majority of gamers who want the system to actually showcase games.....and not just CoD: Poltergeist.

To use sporting terms in order to assess MS's new ad campaigns....

Frat boys - 1
Main consumer base - 0

They really couldn't have made one in addition or just before this for its primary function?

Although the primary function of the Xbox One is debatable at this point

Well it's only in America which is either better or worse depending on how you look at it. On the one hand the people in other countries will have advertisements more relevant to it as a gaming machine. But on the other they are getting a console that has features considered important enough to advertise as a selling point, but cannot actually experience those features for themselves.

While I can certainly see the appeal in having an all-in-one machine such as the Xbox One, they should have really created a whole new product/brand for it. Xbox = Gaming to most people and a shift in direction towards other crowds is going to have many people asking themselves whether it was made with their interests in mind.

Most people buy consoles for games after all, and I doubt there are many people who own an Xbox who do not also own a computer capable of running Skype and a television capable of playing channels with sports on them. It just seems foolish to try and mix them together using a brand purely associated with computer games, especially when half of those things are only available in a single market.

Its a non issue, we know it has games for it. Duh.

I'd be more embarrassed to be caught watching this commercial than gay midget bondage foursome porn with a dubstep background theme.

It almost sounds like Microsoft wants it to be a glorified Netflix machine.

Why would they focus on games - Games are for losers.

Sports are for men!

I like the completely Advert free dashboard that instantly comes up with the legal tagline "pre-release screens shown, subject to change, some sequences shortened" Basically meaning what you see is all a bunch of bollocks.

Oh, and at the end, "The NFL on Xbox One, including NFL.com fantasy football, and Skype also require an Xbox Live Gold membership (sold separately)"

So if an American buys a $500 Xbox One they can then pay a monthly subscription to watch football and use Skype on the smart TVs they already own. Isn't the small print Fantastic.

But the most important question is:

Will the XBox One fill this gaping hole in my life? Will it make me happy?

Those guys in the ad seemed so happy. I want to be happy. Maybe if I buy an XBox I'll be happy like them.

This is why I'm not at all interested int the Xbox Done. It's not a game console, it's a cable box. A cable box that just happens to also play games.

The Xbox brand is recognizable enough that people know it's going to have games.

Therefore they decide to start off by showing off it's other features.

canadamus_prime:
This is why I'm not at all interested int the Xbox Done. It's not a game console, it's a cable box. A cable box that just happens to also play games.

Outside America, it'll have a dozen little blues tiles saying "Service not available."

I like Football. I'll happily watch a game. And nothings better than watching a game where I don't care about the outcome and both teams are fighting hard and it's neck and neck the entire way thru.

But, was it so hard to even mention a Madden game? That would still be football related. At least flash some games on the screen for a few seconds. It's a gaming machine. In theory, anyway.

I doubt anyone will buy a $500 machine to do things like watch TV or check their fantasy football stats. Maybe if the Xbox itself supplied free cable. That would have been a selling point.

Video Games: Football and Feminism.

If only I could go back in time and warn my 5 year old self what I was getting into when I picked up that WarCraft: Orcs and Humans disc.

HOW COULD I HAVE KNOWN!?

They have to realize these general audience attracting features can be used on every other electronic device out there. Even the TV itself can do it. They have to give a really strong reason to spend $500 to add the machine on to a tv that already does all these things.

What can't your tv do? Play the latest Madden game. Boom. Play the madden game for a bit for the real game starts, Xbox gives you a reminder it's about to start(like you really needed it, but you never know), Pause/quit the game, switch over. Oh hey, half time, who cares about seeing miley cyrus shake her skinny, white butt on stage, let's switch back to the video game and trash talk Bob down the street over Skype, hahahaha your team is losing, loser face. Ah yes, effortless, didn't have to get off the couch to do that. Constant, nearly non-stop football intake for the real, hardcore fans.

I understand why they're doing this, they're just going about it all wrong.

And I just checked the ad on Youtube. I was curious about the comments and whatnot. It has twice as many dislikes as likes. And the comments seem to be largely negative towards the ad and console.

Yeah, I'd say this was a perfect PS4 ad.

Saltyk:
And I just checked the ad on Youtube. I was curious about the comments and whatnot. It has twice as many dislikes as likes. And the comments seem to be largely negative towards the ad and console.

Yeah, I'd say this was a perfect PS4 ad.

This is what fascinates me about Microsoft. All those changes weren't made because something inside their heads clicked and they finally realized how wrong they were. The changes happened simply as a response to the public outcry. But they didn't learn anything from it. They simply reacted. They still don't understand. They still think this is the way to go. This is what people want and this is how the console should be advertized. They didn't actually shift their focus AT ALL. They simply changed some of the things to be like Sony in order to be more competitive. They didn't try to do better. No, they did just enough to resemble Sony's business model. And I'll bet you all of those changes will be reversed at some point after the console's been released.

Microsoft something something heads up asses something something daylight something lost the plot......

I think you get what I'm trying to say.

Ok. This is stupid, but one thing I want to clarify here. Did that guy have a 60" TV and his XBox outside?! Maybe his house is made of glass. I'm weary of setting up my radio outside while gardening let alone having thousands of pounds worth of tech on my veranda. One stiff wind in the wrong direction and that TV will topple over like a sail.

On Topic: When you have only 30 seconds for an ad you don't want it bogged down with showing off ALL the features it can do. I'd understand if this was one in a, simultaneously running, series of ads showing off the different features within a theme (football, movies, games, music, TV, etc), but I don't know if that's the case.

Adam Jensen:

Saltyk:
And I just checked the ad on Youtube. I was curious about the comments and whatnot. It has twice as many dislikes as likes. And the comments seem to be largely negative towards the ad and console.

Yeah, I'd say this was a perfect PS4 ad.

This is what fascinates me about Microsoft. All those changes weren't made because something inside their heads clicked and they finally realized how wrong they were. The changes happened simply as a response to the public outcry. But they didn't learn anything from it. They simply reacted. They still don't understand. They still think this is the way to go. This is what people want and this is how the console should be advertized. They didn't actually shift their focus AT ALL. They simply changed some of the things to be like Sony in order to be more competitive. They didn't try to do better. No, they did just enough to resemble Sony's business model. And I'll bet you all of those changes will be reversed at some point after the console's been released.

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. To undo all the horror, you need a Day One Patch. Which is a great thing, if we're being honest. Before I even get to play my games that I just bought, I have to patch my system! Best idea, ever.

But I am far from convinced that they won't Day 360 Patch it all back in. I know at least one friend who has expressed that he may buy it after a year. But he's wanting to make sure they don't patch it all back in. In the meantime, he's getting a PS4.

Watching Microsoft is like watching a car accident. It's amazing and horrible, but you can't look away. You just want to know what they say next.

A video game console where the ads don't show off games?

YOUR CONSOLE IS BAD AND YOU SHOULD FEEL BAD!

I am an NFL fan. That commercial was a total failure.

First, from the being nitpicky about stupid things category, he turns it on (oooh voice commands) with the game already in progress and other fans already on the couch. This would NEVER happen. If it was 5 minutes to kickoff and your TV wasn't on, people would have left already. It may seem a dumb detail, but to me it makes the whole thing lack authenticity. It should have turned onto some pre-game coverage. Then in future cuts you can show the people enjoying the game.

But, in terms of selling it, there were no features that promised to enhance my NFL watching experience. They were there, if you were really observant or paused the video, but they did nothing to highlight them. Things like the "my roster" menu. The scores across the league, current fantasy leaders. All the stuff that I might care about integrating into my gameday watching, but they said nothing about it.

You aren't going to sell me on a product by showing me things that I either have no interest in during the game (skype), or the cliche football room party stuff that requires only a TV, large bowl of chips, and some beer.

And, yeah, would it have been so hard to show a guy playing Madden for like 2 seconds. That would have fit better with the Skype cut.

I can see why they'd want to advertise the box differently to different consumers, but I don't think this does such a good job at it for those people.
'Skype', really? That's one of your main selling points?

They would probably be interested in some sports-games as well, even if they're just an afterthought in the ad.
I mean, looking at that I'd think they're selling the tv. Do they even show the box?

I can't see how that ad would make anyone want to buy it.

Tumedus:
They were there, if you were really observant or paused the video, but they did nothing to highlight them. Things like the "my roster" menu. The scores across the league, current fantasy leaders. All the stuff that I might care about integrating into my gameday watching, but they said nothing about it.

I know nothing about fantasy football.
Does the Xbone offer anything that you can't do on your computer or tv already?

TimeLord:
They really couldn't have made one in addition or just before this for its primary function?

Although the primary function of the Xbox One is debatable at this point

See, you caught it. It's no longer a gaming system, and the focus on "everything but games" highlights it.

Well, as someone who is a big fan of both The NFL and fantasy football I have to say I didn't see anything in that ad that my Galaxy S4 or my Galaxy Note 8 can't do already. I get that they want to advertise this thing to non gamers, and doing so during NFL games is a pretty good move, but they really need to show off more than simply fantasy football live tracking and Skype. Their idea works in theory in but their application of it seemed to fall flat to me.

I'm sorry, but I'm piggy backing on a satellite TV deal. If I wanted good football coverage, I could get it for less than a XBOne. Why BOTHER!? I'll probably cost extra anyways to get NFL service.
And fantasy football...sorry nerds but I need to weigh in on this: Fantasy Football takes AWAY from the sports experience, you are cheering for one team but then you have those players that you want to do good. It suddenly becomes a management issue and less of a leisurely experience. And if you wanted the ultimate multitasking setup, use your god damn PC. I've heard of services that do the same god damn thing, without taking up the TV screen. Do you friends want to give a shit about that 'team'? Most likely, NO! So seriously, stop selling football and SELL THE VIDEO GAMES!

Lieju:

I know nothing about fantasy football.
Does the Xbone offer anything that you can't do on your computer or tv already?

Well, it offers access for people who think computers are "so gay."

We're a technophobic culture that probably does welcome a magic box to play our totally not nerdy fantasy games on.

like a lot of people have said, i am not sure if there is a market for people to buy a game machine when they don't necessarily want one, but perhaps they're trying to work an angle like the wii did?...although the wii was still selling games...

SonOfVoorhees:
Its a non issue, we know it has games for it. Duh.

WE know it can play games for it. But WE aren't the target of this commercial ad. This is for the general populous. Microsoft made this ad in an attempt to try and garner more attention for its new console because its already screwed up with the gamer section with the first announcement (and spent 90 days backpedaling and stepping all over themselves to try and win them back).

The point being made here, though, is less about the content of the commercial, and more about the way Microsoft is presenting itself. One of the first major missteps they made when they announced the Xbox One, as the article plainly stated, was a severe lack of games and a big, blatant focus on all the things any regular smart TV can do.

And that same misstep is being carried over into this TV Spot. They very easily could of remedied this just by including a small bit for a football game. Saying something like "With the Xbox One, you not only can play Madden 20XX, but now you can catch NFL games and even keep track of your fantasy team favorites!".

Captcha: When do you eat popcorn? Simple! When Microsoft makes another flub like this in their general strategy for the new system! Now excuse me, I need to go to a store, seeing as I'm all out...

I dont think this ad says as much about Microsoft's lack of focus on games as it says about their inability to find an effective way to market/sell Kinect.

What i find shocking in thst video isn't the lack of a statement about games (what are they going to put up there "IT PLAYS GAMES"? Kind of a weak marketing slogan), but that it doesn't showcase the Kinect whatsoever when there is such an obvious opportunity. All the needed to do was have a 3 second spot of a guy using motion controls to throw a 'football' and having it reflected on something that looks like madden on the screen. They surely would have tried something like that, I can only assume they couldn't find a way to get it to read clearly. Thats a massive problem for them considering Kinect is microsofts only real argument for why someone should buy an Xbone instead of ps4.

StewShearer:
iPhone TV Spot Forgets About Phone Calls

Apple's new photo-centric iPhone ad focuses on the camera and video recording but excludes phone calls.

Back when the iPhone was originally announced there were some who took issue with the fact that Apple's presentation of its new phone was somewhat light on actual calling. In the years since, the company has made some arguable moves to rectify this. That said, if the device's recent North American TV spot is any indicator, it may still have some lessons to learn. While the ad does a fine job of highlighting features like photos, video recording and sharing, phone calls aren't mentioned once during the course of its sixty second run time.

Now granted, the point of this particular ad is to highlight the iPhone's photo related functionality to capitalize on the Instagram-fueled photo sharing craze. That's perfectly understandable, especially considering the fact that Apple has spent considerable oodles of money to beef up its camera functionality. That being the case, it takes an arguable PR risk in excluding phone calls completely from ads like this. This is potentially exacerbated when you consider that many of the features boasted by the ad are things that a lot of people already have access to. Personally, I'm not going to shell out $500 for photos and video recording. The promise of a new, more powerful phone, however? That's appealing. Then again, I live in a fairly phone-centric bubble. What do you think? Did Apple mess up with this ad or did it hit the money shot?

Yeah, the original article is just as stupid.

To me this ad represents one of the main problems that gamers had with the console when it was first announced: no one was really interested in all the bells and whistles tacked onto the console. One of the marketing points for the XBone is that it isn't just for gamers, but rather it has so many uses that people completely uninterested in gaming could be interested in with this all-in-one device. The problem is that $500 is one hell of a steep "convenience charge" just to have all these things rolled into one device considering the fact that most non-gamers already have completely free access to all the extra features of the XBone, as such they're likely not going to be wanting to drop that kind of cash just to get something that does all of those things. All someone needs is a laptop and a TV (things that are quite common these days) and they've essentially already essentially got an XBone.

This is why such an ad campaign isn't very effective, and why they should be focusing on the games rather than the features. Gamers are going to want to buy it because it plays games, not because you can watch football and use Skype. They're basically completely neglecting their target market in an attempt to capture a new market that is very unlikely to want their product.

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