Apple’s New Christmas Ad Might Actually Make You Cry

One kid with his head buried in his iPhone through the holidays comes up with a stunning present

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Robert Galbraith / REUTERS

It must be a little dusty in here, because there’s something in our eye. Or maybe it’s because we were just watching Apple’s new holiday ad. The 90-second spot shows off the power of the new iPhone, all while tugging at the heartstrings.

The best holiday ads have always leaned heavily on simplicity, nostalgia and a strong sense of family — who can forget the Folgers ad where the son comes home from college to surprise the family on Christmas morning — it’s endured since 1985. Apple is taking a page from that playbook with their new holiday-centric commercial, “Misunderstood.”

It’s the story of a young teenager who heads to his grandparents’ house for the holidays. We first see him as the family is hitting the road, and he promptly has his nose in his iPhone. Throughout the next couple of days, while the family sleds, bakes cookies, has snowball fights and enjoys each other’s company, our young protagonist is constantly buried in his phone.

But it turns out he wasn’t Snapchatting friends or playing Candy Crush. He was recording the entire trip to cut a well-edited video that’s his gift to the family on Christmas morning. We’ll let that sink in for a minute.

34 comments
hypnotoad72
hypnotoad72

It takes a lot of time to shoot and edit video.  These 30 second schmaltzy gimmicks only exist to make you want to buy, because Tim Cook needs your money more than you do.  


Live with the family instead of wasting time.  The video will not last forever, if the storage RAM gets corrupted, the hard drive fails, or other problems - because none of these technology companies has done a thing about data integrity or eliminating entropy.

MoriaFrazer
MoriaFrazer

Who plays the grandmother?? I know I've seen her before.

I love this ad!

JACKJAES
JACKJAES

I think it's more likely that Chinese are presenting "apples" for New Years because they are more affordable tha an "Apple" computer or I-pad but convey the sense that "I hope you are so prosperous in the New Year that you can afford a real Apple."

http://goo.gl/CCJwn7

AndrewTobert
AndrewTobert

Feels weird that you'd go to all the trouble of saying 'happy holidays' (when the song is about Christmas), but then run an ad that's full of white people. 

tdick68
tdick68

Why is there so much discussion about the wording??? Can't we just enjoy the commercial and what it stands for which is family and togetherness. If it bothers you so much, change the channel. Thanks Apple and Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas

Katie
Katie

It made me cry!! One of the best commercials I have ever seen!!!!

SusanLapane
SusanLapane

Yes, it definitely brought tears to my eyes!

Cherry0105
Cherry0105

This was filmed in my city of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada!!!  The actors were all from Alberta too.  Yep, we did have that much snow by early November!

salvador.s.orozco
salvador.s.orozco

So what app was the kid using?? There was no real part of the ad where he got to a computer, upload it, edit it, then use airplay on the tv..any answers?? Could it have been iMovie?

idastudios
idastudios

Talk about a lack of continuity. He has the camera in portrait mode but has a video playing in landscape. 

suewilson
suewilson

I loved it.. until it said, "Happy Holidays."  COME ON!  The whole ad was about CHRISTMAS!!!!  I am SO tired of the word "Holiday!"  Say, it... come on... I know you can do it...CHRISTMAS!  There!  That wasn't so hard.  I'm boycotting any company that refuses to say Christmas in their ads.

RossWilson
RossWilson

so that kid missed christmas because he was too busy recording it? I think regardless of the little video his family would have preferred he took part in all the activities. It's cute but basically is aimed at prepping parents for when their kids ignore them soon as they get their new little i device.. heads up: they won't be making you a christmas video that's for shizzle.        

dougeelee
dougeelee

A very well made ad from Apple for the season. It has the Nostalgic feel to and it reminded me of my memories growing up as well. But seriously, they should have no problem saying "Merry Christmas" instead of "Happy Holidays". Which Holiday is it?

It shouldn't be offensive since they have (Christmas) elements in the Ad right? Their song is "Have yourself a Merry little Christmas"?


I don't think their sales will decline by saying Merry Christmas.



Otherwise, still a great heartwarming ad. 



MalcolmTucker
MalcolmTucker

My favorite app is the one which places millions of 15-year old Apple Factory Employees in the hospital for pneumonia.  

I'm told it's also Phil Schiller's favorite.  He plays that app when driving his Martini Porsche around town.

aponchelle
aponchelle

Totally fell for it. And a beautiful way to use technology. Good job Apple. 

Aksa8
Aksa8

Great ad. But it wouldn't take much effort to tug at TIME's heartstrings, considering their heart definitely belongs to Apple.


DenisBulichenko
DenisBulichenko

Please try Together Video Camera app. It makes the work done without hussle.

hypnotoad72
hypnotoad72

@tdick68 - then let's make families and be together with them instead of crying and buying Apple's electronic toys as a result?  Look up entropy and its effects on any form of storage material, and how long it takes to record and edit movies for more...  it's more ephemeral than the marriages that fail before 5 years are up, often because the people prefer to play with electronic toys than to be families...  thank Apple for so much!

hypnotoad72
hypnotoad72

@Katie - PT Barnum and the Pied Piper would be proud of those loving and crying on cue...

hypnotoad72
hypnotoad72

@Cherry0105- so apple would rather improve Canada's (and China's) economies, despite the guffaw that claims we're a global economy...

hypnotoad72
hypnotoad72

@MicahBoyGenius- many Aspies are more empathic than given credit for.


Some carefully crafted song and dance to get you to support them at your expense doesn't cut the ice.

hypnotoad72
hypnotoad72

@suewilson - then spend time with your family instead of fawning over Apple's carefully crafted fiction, designed solely to get customers to make Apple rich.

JohnofSydney
JohnofSydney

@suewilson Apple is confused, suewilson. Yes, it had the words 'Happy Holidays' on the screen, but the singer wishes us a Merry Christmas'.

Apple has to be going downhill fast when it does'nt notice the jarring contradiction of giving an anytime of year greeting at the same time as the very specific Christmas one.

tua96426
tua96426

@suewilson I've tried resisting myself from getting sucked into this argument, clearly I failed. As someone pointed out, the song is "have yourself a merry little christmas" but beyond that, let's not forget that Apple is a global company and not everyone celebrates christmas. I don't celebrate christmas but then again I don't get offended when people wish me Merry Christmas. 


I think I am quite liberal in that sense. But a global company like Apple has to really play to the masses.... their likes, dislikes etc. I think this ad has something for everyone. The sense of family is far beyond any religious boundaries and holidays like christmas... 


you have the right to voice your opinion as it's your right. But why taint this wonderful sense of unity that this ad seems to capture so nicely? 


Anyhow, wish you and your family a merry christmas and a happy new year! May you get all the presents you wished for :) and some great food!


Kind regards,


- SK

pattireis
pattireis

@RossWilsonSee, he was taking part. In a way that not only made him happy (he was, after all, right there with everyone) but that allowed his family to see themselves through his eyes. It's a wonderful family that can allow kids that chance to express themselves. And I often took pictures during the holidays LONG before iPhones or even video cameras came along. It allowed me to be there without feeling totally overwhelmed with everything. Make room in your heart for the introverts. :)

downhiller80
downhiller80

I wouldn't say he missed Christmas. I think he captured perfectly.

Geoff_55
Geoff_55

@dougeelee Christmas and New Years Day are very close together.  Both are holidays.  Happy Holidays is a greeting requesting you to enjoy both of them.  Or you can complain, and ask them to say nothing the next time.

lantzn
lantzn

I haven't seen that one. Can you post a link?

dhb3k2
dhb3k2

@JohnofSydney @suewilson   Maybe I'm missing something, but isn't Christmas a holiday?  Doesn't New Years (another holiday) also happen during this season?  Why would you conclude, simply because Fox TV wishes to wage this annual tirade, that a salutation of "Happy Holidays" is somehow exclusive rather than inclusive?  Isn't this season, and all of its holidays, supposed to be about sharing, respecting, and loving one another?  


After answering all of these questions, if you still believe that "Happy Holidays" is offensive, then perhaps you should move to a place where 100% of inhabitants are Christian, like Vatican City.  Don't be surprised, though, if you run into a man wearing white who, like Apple, promotes "liberal" views about treating people and their beliefs with dignity and respect.  

JohnofSydney
JohnofSydney

@tua96426 If Apple is playing to the masses as you say why do they have the singer wishing the masses a Merry Christmas when the very non-specific Happy Holidays is on the screen? You're saying that suewilson has the right of free speech is contradicted by you saying that her comment is tainting a pretty ad. If she was'nt to 'taint' the ad and so keep you happy she would have to keep silent about what she finds objectionable - and that's trying to discourage her voicing her opinion.