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Apple, Samsung marketing hype viewed as 'moving in opposite directions'

As Apple's product unveilings have moved to increasingly smaller venues, rival Samsung is set to unveil its flagship Galaxy S IV at a heavily hyped event in New York City's Radio City Music Hall.

The contrast of styles led Philip Elmer-Dewitt of Apple 2.0 to observe that Samsung's marketing has made Apple look "tame." As part of Samsung's hype, the company sent a "flash mob" of dancers into Times Square, wearing jackets with the number "4" on the back and holding signs that advertise tonight's unveiling of Samsung's next flagship handset.

"It's almost as if the two companies — engaged in a global battle for command of the $400 billion mobile device industry — are moving in opposite directions," Elmer-Dewitt said. "Apple in its marketing and advertising has become quieter and more modest, hoping its products and services will speak for themselves. Samsung, meanwhile, is going bigger and brasher, hiring the big halls and the dancers and mocking Apple — and itself — in TV ads loaded with attitude."

When Apple was considered by the public to be an underdog, it would gain recognition and garner praise for commercials that would call out the competition. The company's long running and award winning "Get a Mac" ads, which portrayed Windows as being susceptible to viruses, system crashes and other serious problems, were ended in 2009.


Since then, Apple grew so much that its market cap passed ExxonMobil and made it the world's largest company. And while Samsung sells more overall phones than Apple, the iPhone dominates with a commanding 72 percent of overall industry profits.

Though it's no longer an underdog, Apple did show signs of fighting back this week against Samsung's hype. In a rare interview, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller disparaged Android as an inferior product to Apple's iOS mobile platform, citing fragmentation and revealing that four times as many iPhone users switched to iOS from Android than left Android for iOS.

Samsung will unveil the Galaxy S IV at its "Global Unpacked" event set to take place in New York at 7 p.m. this evening. AppleInsider will have full, live coverage.