At this point, it has become almost socially acceptable to stare at your phone, regardless of your location or any conversation you might be having. AT&T knows this, and they’re not here to help.
The ad below is for AT&T Next, a relatively new payment plan in which users can trade in their phone or tablet for the new model each year, as long as they pay more per month. In the commercial, ex-iPhone 5 users are so enthralled with their colourful 5Cs that they ignore the world around them and forgo responsibilities.
Coupled with playful music and a series of smiles, it is a bit like a celebration of humanity’s decline:
The ad has not been well-received online, which is at least in part due to a popular Gizmodo article that said the commercial is a symbol of “everything wrong with technology.” Its YouTube page has more negative votes than positive, and comments mock it. Tweets about it are few — most Twitter users talking about AT&T commercials are waiting for agency BBDO’s much more well-received ads with kids saying cute things.
This is a good representation of the Internet’s reaction:
The AT&T commercial that advertises their Next program for iPhone doesn’t make me wanna switch, but punch all iPhone users…including me.
— Leigha de Luxe (@leighadeluxe) November 11, 2013
The AT&T Next service has been widely panned by critics, saying that it is silly to agree to pay hundreds of dollars a year more just to get a new phone.
That said, Next is exceeding the company’s expectations, AT&T’s Mobility CEO Ralph de la Vega told CNET. He expects up to 10% of AT&T users to adopt the plan in the fourth quarter.
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