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Apple slams iPad Pro for ‘crushing’ ad: ‘Fascist aesthetic’

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Apple has had a rough year. But maybe it’s deserved?

One of the richest, most profitable, and most valuable (at least in terms of its stock market cap) tech companies in the world has unveiled its new “spatial computing” headset, the Vision Pro, an entirely new product category since the Apple Watch. ’s first product. In 2015, it performed somewhat underwhelming, receiving mixed reviews and reportedly suffering from poor sales and declining consumer interest.

Subsequently, Apple was forced to open its iPhone to third-party app stores and was sued by the U.S. Department of Justice for allegedly monopolizing the sales of smartphones and smartwatches.

Now, just this week, it’s hosting a special event to unveil a new ultra-thin (0.20-inch, the thinnest Apple device yet) iPad powered by an M4 chip that the company says is optimized for AI. Pro, less than 24 hours later, a new large-scale video ad promoting the device called “Crush” is facing public backlash and is quickly going viral.

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Watch the video below

The video shows a giant industrial hydraulic press — a category of equipment best known for appearing in viral videos over the past decade and a half — literally crushing and destroying dozens of other objects and creative instruments, from trumpets to cans. painting. At the end of the ad, the media lifted up to reveal that these items had somehow been transformed into the new iPad Pro.

The metaphor and message are clear: iPad Pro can encompass and replace all of these old legacy instruments and technologies and be more portable, sleeker, and more powerful than ever before.

This is similar to similar observations and advertisements made by other fans and creatives in the past about how PCs and smartphones have replaced almost every personal device of the past – stereo radios/speakers, diaries, calculators, drawing tablets, typewriters , cameras – by offering many of their same core features in a smaller, unified, more portable form factor.

Why the backlash?

So why are users collectively boycotting the new iPad Pro’s obsession with advertising?

Read on for some of their reactions – as you’ll see below, the main takeaway is that people are disgusted by Apple’s blunt metaphor for destroying a beloved traditional instrument that people hold in high esteem and ascribe intangible value to and items. Because of their creative potential, and the overarching and probably unintentional message that Apple wants to literally flatten creativity and violently crush yesterday’s creative tools in favor of a luxury piece of technology worth hundreds of dollars that operates The system and app ecosystem are tightly controlled and controlled by Apple. limit.

It’s part of a larger anti-tech public sentiment

Is this part of a larger “tech boycott” or backlash against tech companies that has emerged in public consciousness over the past few years?

If so, this is arguably one of the most powerful and unique displays of anti-tech and anti-gadget sentiment I have ever seen. But then again, critics would argue that Apple’s ad itself is a powerful anti-art message.

It also reminds me in many ways of the rising class consciousness among visual artists and creatives—if you can call it that—against AI companies plagiarizing creative works without explicit permission or compensation, as well as conflicts with the original authors Competing training models.

In the coming weeks and months, we’ll see if and how this perception affects Apple’s sales or broader reputation among consumers.

Either way, for a company known for its marketing and advertising—the “Think Different” campaign remains one of the most universally respected and iconic campaigns of all time—this new iPad Pro ad struck a chord with many users The fact that such misguided attention is given does not explain the problem. This doesn’t seem to bode well for Apple’s reputation right now.

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