He needs help, thinks Apple.
Screenshot by ZDNet
If there's one word that sums up
Apple, it's generosity.
If there are two words that sum up Apple, they are generosity and magnanimity.
How many other companies are generous enough to sell you something revolutionary and then magnanimous enough to help you in your greatest hour of distress?
We're here today, you see, to consider one man's desperate plight.
This man found himself suffering more than any human should. He found himself without hope or even a dollar to his name.
And he found himself rescued by a generous and magnanimous corporation.
Wait, what are we talking about here? It's Apple's
latest advertising attempt to get you to sign up for its credit card.
Perhaps you think Apple's proximity to Goldman Sachs on the Apple Card might turn you into a less likable sort of person. Apple, though, wants you to know it's all about love and caring.
It wants to lull you into admitting that you just
can't leave home without an Apple Card. On your iPhone, that is. The true joy, of course, is that it's linked with Apple Pay, so you can suddenly have money.
Admit it, you aren't the most competent, are you?
You're the sort, explains the ad, who forgets their wallet at home, goes to the local market, feels hungry, and grabs a chocolate bar from the display.
Even then, you don't realize your wallet didn't leave home with you. No, you stand in line, wait to get to the checkout, and only then realize your forgetfulness.
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Yes, you're thoroughly annoying.
The people behind you in line find you ridiculous as well. Especially when you theatrically try to shake out your puffy waistcoat, just in case a stray buck might emerge.
Even little boys find you deeply unamusing.
But then you have an astonishing idea, clearly spurred by some previous Apple ad. This is the moment, chocolate bar perched in your mouth, to apply for an Apple Card.
And so our target market representative gets out his iPhone, applies for an Apple Card and, apparently in minutes, he's approved for a $5,000 credit limit.
It's that easy.
I worry, though, about Apple's promise in this ad: "Apply and use in minutes."
It's hard to tell how many minutes our poor hero had to wait for Apple's nod. Certainly, the line behind him is now gone.
Moreover, he still hasn't finished his chocolate bar.
Does that mean he stood in the store, tense, not knowing what would happen if he wasn't approved?
Does it mean he was too scared to finish his chocolate bar, in case the woman at the checkout would think he was trying to steal it and then pull a gun on him? (Hey, this is America.)
I think I've resolved it. He was so happy to be approved for his Apple Card that he went and grabbed a second chocolate bar to celebrate.
That's it. Apple is subliminally telling people that you'll get at least $5,000 more you can spend, so go to town.
Please, I want you to be happy. But getting an additional $5,000 of credit just for the sake of a chocolate bar (or two) may not be worth it, whatever Apple says.
And another thing, if he really had forgotten his wallet, he could have told the nice woman at the checkout, left his shopping, gone home -- or to his car -- to get his wallet and come back again.
He could even have left some security with her. His iPhone, for example.
But no. How would that have highlighted Apple's most central, caring traits?