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Samsung suffered a new kind of endorsement failure when its spokesman for the Galaxy Note phablet line tweeted out his frustration after the device deleted all his content and rebooted.
"My phone just erased everything it had in it and rebooted," tweeted LeBron James. "One of the sickest feelings I've ever had in my life!!!"
James subsequently deleted the message, but not before it was retweeted and favorited over a thousand times by his nearly 12 million followers, and preserved for posterity through a screen capture (above, provided by reader Alex B).
Unlike Apple's free, tightly integrated iCloud for backups, Android users mustselect from a variety of available backup services, with recommended options priced as high as $5 to $10 per month.
While James likely has no problem affording the $120 annual fee of the fanciest third party backup programs and likely has executive assistants who can sort through Google Play's spyware scams to identify a cloud backup program that's less likely to risk leaking his phone's photos or other private data, the "sickest feeling" he described suggests that he didn't have any backups available.
Samsung's promotional efforts to pose celebrities next to its products has frequently encountered embarrassing turns, such as when Oscars host Ellen DeGeneres tweeted before, during and after the event from her iPhone, despite engaging in theatrical use of a Samsung product on stage.
Last year alone, Samsung spent $14 billion on marketing, a figure that investors have targeted as extravagantly excessive. But even as the company works to reduce its marketing expenses, Samsung is struggling with expensive sponsorships where celebrities have put their free Galaxy back in the box to use iPhones.
At the last Summer Olympics, Samsung signed an "exclusive agreement with David Beckham to be its global brand ambassador for the London 2012 Olympic Games," but Beckham was, embarrassingly for Samsung, just spotted using his iPhone 5s at the Super Bowl.
In December, Samsung launched a "Galaxy 11" fantasy soccer team campaign that was intended to go viral, but instead went awry when star team manager Franz Beckenbauer tweeted out Samsung's prepared remarks from his iPhone.
In October, T-Mobile chief executive John Legere intended to use Twitter to direct attention to Samsung Mobile's latest Note 3 phablet and the company's Galaxy Gear watch accessory, but inadvertently did so via his iPhone 5s.
Last spring, Samsung's sponsored Spanish tennis star David Ferrer tweeted out ostensible satisfaction with his #GalaxyS4 and stated that he was "configuring S Health on my new #GalaxyS4 to help with training @SamsungMobile," albeit from his iPhone.