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article imageThe 'I'm a Mac' guy now advertises Android phones

By James Walker     Feb 1, 2017 in Technology
Actor Justin Long, known for his role in Apple's "Get a Mac" ad campaign, has signed a new contract with Huawei to film a series of commercials for its Android smartphones. In the videos, Long alludes to his former work for Apple.
Apple's "Get a Mac" campaign became famous for the way in which it tried to present the benefits of Mac computers over Windows machines. Long, playing the role of the Mac, started each advert with the tagline "Hello, I'm a Mac." Co-star John Hodgman, performing as a Windows PC, was then introduced.
The campaign has gone down in history as one of Apple's standout marketing efforts. It promoted Mac as a popular, casual computer that's easy to use, contrasting it with Microsoft's complex and vulnerable Windows.
Long hasn't appeared in another Apple ad since the campaign ended in 2009. He's now returning to technology advertisements with Huawei, having been specially sought out for his work on Get a Mac.
Huawei is the third largest smartphone company in the world but is struggling to grow itself into a truly global business. The company is trying to get its phones known in the U.S. but sales are still low compared with the market leaders. Huawei evidently intends to fight Apple with the company's former ad actor, creating its own line of light-hearted videos to extol the virtues of its handsets.
Although the format of the campaign is different, it still focuses on the same premise: Long casually lists the product's features, using humour to make it memorable. While there are no explicit statements of Long's former role, there are several references to Apple's campaign. At one point Long says "I have a tonne of experience in tech," alluding to his work on Get a Mac.
The ad agency that's creating the campaigns apparently wanted Long to directly mention Apple. However, the actor convinced them to tone it down for a less pronounced effect. Huawei was also looking for a subtle dig at Apple, rather than an obvious attack.
"The original concept 'was a much more emboldened approach to call out the previous relationship with Apple,' but Long and the client encouraged them to find 'a nice middle ground where that idea is inferred as opposed to explicitly stated," industry site Campaign reports.
Although the videos are light-hearted, they do signify Huawei's commitment to gaining the same traction in the U.S. that it has achieved in China. The company usurped Apple as the country's top smartphone brand in 2015 and has continued to gain market share since. Apple has seen similar success in its home market though, last night blowing away analyst expectations by reporting record-breaking quarterly iPhone sales.
Huawei needs Long's ad campaign to convince sceptical U.S. smartphone buyers to take a chance on a brand that's still very much emerging outside of Asia. The company will be widely promoting the adverts to increase consumer awareness of its name. Two videos have already been published, focusing on Huawei's Mate 9 Android smartphone and MateBook Windows 10 laptop.
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