Apple Tugs at Heart Strings with New iPhone Holiday Ad

| News

Apple began airing a new holiday-themed ad on Monday featuring the iPhone 5S. The Mac, iPhone and iPad maker's new ad, Misunderstood, is longer than many of the company's ads at 90 seconds and was clearly designed to pull at our hearts.

Apple's iPhone 5S Misunderstood holiday commercialApple's iPhone 5S Misunderstood holiday commercial

Like so many Apple ads, Misunderstood focuses on the people and relationships while the products they use are almost incidental. In this case, the commercial weaves together the story of a family reuniting for the holidays while one teenager seems to be more interested in his smartphone.

The ad plays off of our assumptions and emotions to pull us through the story and in the end the iPhone plays an important role while still keeping the family as the center of attention. It may be sappy, or it may be heart felt, but it's effective because even without ever mentioning a product name you know you're watching an iPhone commercial.

The Mac Observer Spin The Mac Observer Spin is how we show you what our authors think about a news story at quick glance. Read More →

Apple's ads are about emotion and not product specs, and that's why they tend to be far more memorable than their competitor's commercials. People don't remember Samsung's commercials.

Popular TMO Stories



Does Samsung run commercials?

Lee Dronick

  Does Samsung run commercials?

Yes they do.


An otherwise nice ad ruined for me by the jarring melodic departures put in by the singer/arranger/whoever is to blame.  If you’re going to change the melody of a classic song, better make sure the change is for the better.  That’s what jazz musicians do when they improvise on a standard.  Here, the modifications actually make the melodic structure less sophisticated, more repetitive, and the tonal range narrower.  In short, they dumbed down the song.


(Watched it at work with sound off so I can’t comment on the music)


Merry Christmas aardman!


I remember Samsung’s commercials. I remember that they suck. smile


I unapologetically love this ad.


Love the new ad and the sentiment behind it, but did anyone else notice that the boy’s video fits the widescreen TV perfectly even though he did all his filming with his iPhone in vertical (rather than horizontal) orientation. A Christmas miracle indeed…



I was, but not anymore now that the dang ad music ruined it.  Bah, humbug!  grin


iPhone orientation aside, this is a terrific commercial.


Preety good.

Merry Christmas to all readers and TMO staff.


@ aardman ~ I know a little something about music, so I listened to the musical bit three times, to figure out what you were talking about. Though the tempo is a bit slower, I don’t believe they changed a single note.

Log in to comment (TMO, Twitter or Facebook) or Register for a TMO account