Microsoft’s latest Zune ads more artistic than Apple’s - Macenstein

Microsoft’s latest Zune ads more artistic than Apple’s

Posted by Dr. Macenstein

OK, so we all know the Zune is not quite the iPod killer some had predicted. In fact, there are reports that iPod car chargers are outselling the Zune on Amazon these days. However, there IS one area Microsoft has impressed me with the Zune, and that is advertising. Check out this new commercial for the Zune entitled “Cookie”. (click below)

The latest Zune ad from ad agency 72andsunny has a very “Tim Burton/Film Board of Czechoslovakia” feel to it, and I think it is VERY well done. Sure, the visuals will likely scare the crap out of young children, and you have to already have heard of the Zune and be familiar with its song sharing abilities to even understand it, but it is a visual tour de force that I think one ups Apple’s energetic neon nano ads. I will not debate the fact that the iPod neon ads are likely a much better approach if you want to sell music players, and there IS sort of a downtrodden, communist vibe to the Zune ad, but still, kudos to Microsoft for evoking a deep and genuine response from this viewer, even if it IS melancholy and confusion.


65 Responses to “Microsoft’s latest Zune ads more artistic than Apple’s”
  1. Way Cool Jr. says:

    It’s kind of “Jesus and the Loaves and Fishes”-ish to me.
    But yea i like it.

  2. mario says:

    yes, it is visually atractive, but IMHO most people won’t have any idea what it is about.

  3. macmuflim says:

    alright .. but …anyway, I like the music … any idea where its from ?


  4. Jabberwocky says:

    Wll I have been told its an ad for the Zune and I’m still clueless as to whats going on.

    Sure its like the Juses and the loaves and Fish, but whats not mentioned in this version you still end up hunger at the end.

  5. John says:

    Where’s the Zune player in all this? Many people do not know what Zune is? Show the player. Do they think it look’s so bad that they don’t want to show the player?

  6. Luis Rivera says:

    I dont think the riaa is going to be happy if we share our music like that

  7. Alan says:

    Loves and Fishes? Well, okidoki, sorta, if music is nurishing…

    Has WiFi
    Can Pass Music From You
    To Others
    With you still having the Music
    So you can do it again and again

    And when you do it enough, buildings will walk out of your way…
    Which is a good thing once the music you shared stops working for all the now irate folk you shared it with…..

  8. It is very ambiguous indeed, but artsy for MS. I like that they are trying to be creative and succeeding in an abstract sort of way.

  9. Clint says:

    I’m interested to hear if anybody actually does meet anyone and fall in love with/hook up with ANYONE because of a Zune. From my own experience technology will most likely not get you anywhere with the ladies.

  10. Ikaruss says:

    The song is M. Ward’s Magic Trick off of Post-War.

  11. macmuflim: the artist for the music is M. Ward.

  12. tuner53 says:

    that commercial is very dumb…. it has nothing to do with a zune: there are no pictures of it, no words describing it, there is no text saying anything, and if you don’t already know exactly what a zune is, they you won’t have any clue what this commercial is even about

  13. nobody says:

    the music is from m. ward’s “post-war” album.

  14. someguy says:

    For the curious, the song is called Magic Trick by M.Ward. It is on his latest album, Post-War.

  15. BDB says:

    Nothing about that wanted to make me listen to music. Something about the feel of 1800’s England doesn’t exactly scream cutting edge high tech to me.

    If this ad has a wide viewership, the final nail has been pounded into the zune coffin.

  16. saltinecracka says:

    macmufflim the singer is m.ward. He is awesome. You should check him out

  17. Shady says:

    I agree with Mario. Ads like these are nice and everything. But they don’t really explain anything to someone who’s never heard of a zune.

  18. Andrew says:

    I love it, it conveys the excitement, satisfaction and gratitude of sharing.

    My favorite part is when the house gets up and moves out of the way.

    …perhaps a metaphor for the RIAA stepping out of the way of legitimate file sharing?

    Good job MS, you’ve got a long road to haul.


  19. Hot Sauce says:

    I could be wrong, but it might be about the song sharing idea

  20. Tyler says:

    > yes, it is visually atractive, but IMHO most people won’t have any idea what it is about.

    And this doesn’t also apply to iPod advertisements?

  21. Jeff Finley says:

    Yeah I like the ad, regardless. It’s got a totally different vibe and kudos to Microsoft for not trying to outright copy the iPod aesthetic. Still not gonna buy a zune though, but I like the ad.

  22. Tyler says:

    To elaborate on the above: If someone had no prior knowledge of what an iPod was, he or she wouldn’t have any idea what a commercial about dancing silhouettes was about, either.

  23. yo white boy says:

    I almost liked this, but yeah, it’s so very communismy… it’s like it was made by… commies or something. whatever.

    idiot yank. fuck you and your understanding of the world (which is like that of a child). yanqui, enemy of humanity.

  24. Jason says:

    I think the lyrics of that song speak volumes about the Zune:

    “She’s got one magic trick – and that’s it.”

    Great selling point.

  25. Aaron Blohowiak says:

    The song is “Magic Trick” by M. Ward.

  26. mgrice says:

    That’s not an ad for Microsoft’s Zune. Look at the end of the film, in the bottom right corner. It’s for (

  27. Anonymous says:

    It’s a brilliant ad when you think about it, and when you’ve spent several months following the Zune production and release. Given that most consumers don’t do the former and haven’t done the latter, I’m not sure they’ll take it to heart. However pretty it is. And my it’s pretty.

  28. wtgggg says:

    god your assholes, mac fans are absolute assholes

    if apple made this, it would be the most abstract and creative work alive, which only the elite could comprehend but it would be OK because it was from apple

    microsoft does something short but happy, nothing short of simple, the very MOTTO OF FUCKING APPLE ITSELF (ironically) but it’s what… just… oh… bland..


    (oh fuck everything i said is WRONG BECAUSE OF TYPE Os, god you’re all so fucked up in your faces)

    i know i know i type like a kid, god knows intentially, this way you can all focus insecurely on my innabililityy to amessage send and you dont have to fdocus on the MEANING.

    :D: D::D:D

  29. madgumby says:

    What’s a Zune? A new cookie?

  30. Lucian says:

    They didn’t mention the part where your cookie disappears after 3 days. 😛

  31. BB says:

    Well the Zune does sort of have a Soviet-army look to it, so a downtrodden communist vibe sort of makes sense.

  32. kulinux says:

    the message of this ad is totally wrong: If there is anything that could be characterized this way (you share it but you don’t loose any part) it is not an DRM’ed Music Player with a proprietary software. Ok, we do not see, that one of the persons getting a half cookie would be able to share this one again with the next person – what in fact is impossible with the Zune. But isn’t it that what “sharing” is about? Anyway. It also looks ugly – so: No (or even worse: wrong) message, poorly done … sounds like the Zune itselft 🙂

  33. Nice Paul says:

    It’s a little white iPod sharing cookie (or, music) with all the nasty people! She never runs out of cookie to share. That’s her “one magic trick” before she disappears when the Zune comes along, according to the soundtrack.

  34. dd says:

    To be fair, you don’t get to see the end of the ad, so there could be something that shows you the Zune etc…

  35. Nanda says:

    Nice ad, music definately sounds like an m. ward song, time to search …

    yup, it’s Magic Trick by M. ward, good stuff

  36. Clint says:

    I dig the ad. MS gets that music is social and will keep grinding until they get market share. Also, this is a smart play to get into the home. Expect to see more synergy with media center.

  37. zunebites says:

    wtgggg-You might be more of a moron if you gave it just a bit more effort.

    Cute commercial, but does someone think it’ll help sell that POS?

  38. Jko says:

    Commercials like this don’t need to be about the player. It is about building a name and getting it out there. It doesn’t matter if the person seeing it now has no idea what it is for, just that they know the name Zune. Remember MS’s typical strategy for markets is long term. As it makes some sort of impact, good or bad, they are getting recognition and starting to build a brand

    >DRM’ed Music Player with a proprietary software. Ok, we do not see, that one of the persons getting a half cookie would be able to share this one again with the next person – what in fact is impossible with the Zune. But isn’t it that what “sharingâ€? is about? Anyway. It also looks ugly – so: No (or even worse: wrong) message, poorly done … sounds like the Zune itselft 🙂

    You are a goddamned retard. It isn’t DRM’ed to hell and I hate that clueless argument. It doesn’t DRM anything. Microsoft tries to add a unique feature within their legal abilities untill they can push for a more open sharing platform and people shit on it for not being “good enough”.

  39. Marc-o says:

    I’ll keep my Ipod
    That doesn’t make me feel like buying a Zune… especially if it has very good crashing capabilities…

  40. Trevor says:

    The “ad” has nothing at all to do with Microsoft, and everything to do with the agency that created it. Of course Microsoft had to green light it (which deserves a little credit) but artistically and creatively it is as related to Microsoft as a rock is to a light bulb. Good ad (who ever did it).

  41. Ian says:

    Hey, M. Ward song = great. Especially my favourite of his songs. Only wish it were a longer song 🙁

  42. weird_ed says:

    I’m not a Zune-fan, but I really like their ads. I like this one too:

  43. Kyle says:

    Do the cookies expire in 3 days?

  44. Jeff Tyler says:

    The song is “Magic Trick” by M. Ward

  45. Joseph H says:


    The music is by M. Ward, and the song is called Magic Trick

  46. kirk says:

    i actually enjoyed it. and was suprised that MS got a respectable artist to do their commercial.

    the only problem i have with it is that it doesn’t show the cookie dissapearing after 3 bites…

    a bit misleading on MS’s part.

  47. lollerkeet says:

    > Do the cookies expire in 3 days?

    I think the ad is misleading for this reason. The ad shows what the Zune could have been, not what it is. (I suspect Microsoft are hoping for people to make their own firmware updates to fix the problem; else they will get their arse kicked when Sandisk or Creative make their own uncrippled version).

  48. Mike says:

    Visually very nice; I’d like to see more from this team.

    One point though – this isn’t “from Microsoft”, it’s “for Microsoft”. The artistic input that makes this enjoyable to watch has nothing to do with That Company.

    = Mike

  49. Michael Tyznik says:

    I like the ad, but the cookies should shrivel up three days after they’re given, leaving only a link to the online cookie store.

  50. Kilian says:

    Going with that analogy, they forget to tell you that the cookie will vanish from your mouth within a few minutes…

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