N900 advertising in the mainstream (Times and Tube)

Published by Rafe Blandford at 14:18 UTC, January 24th 2010

A number of adverts, featuring the N900, have started to appear in the mainstream UK media and poster locations. The most prominent advert highlights to multi-tasking capabilities of the device and shows six applications running on the N900's dashboard. Such advertising is likely to reach a more mainstream audience and increase awareness of the N900. Read on for more.

The advert below has appeared in both The Times (one of the UK's daily newspapers) and The Sunday Times (a weekend paper). The Times has a daily circulation of around 600,000. The Sunday Times has a circulation of around 1.2 million. It's likely that this is part of a wider campaign.

N900 Ad in the Times

N900 adverts in the Times on Wednesday 20th [High resolution].

The same advert has also been placed at a number of London Underground stations (I saw one at Tottenham Court Road). These adverts displayed on the tunnel wall opposite the platform and are roughly 3 by 8 metres in size.


Advertising on the Tube (London Underground). [Image via: Mobile Industry Review]

As you can see the advert includes, in the lower right hand corner, the Vodafones and Carphone Warehouse logos. In the UK the N900 is currently exclusive to Vodafone (although you can buy one SIM-free), but several other operators are planning to carry the device in due course.

With this type of advertising it is typical for the three brands (Nokia, Vodafone and Carphone Warehouse) to share the costs involved.

Whether this is a good thing or not will depend on your viewpoint. The N900 is a powerful device and holds plenty of appeal for technology enthusiasts and early adopters. However it is also fair to say that the N900 is a step on an unfinished journey; Nokia themselves described it as step four of five for Maemo at Nokia World.

Whether the N900 is ready for the mass consumer market, where it will be measured against devices like the Nokia N97 mini, Apple iPhone, high-end Android phones and others is an interesting question. For example, compare the user experience of the iTunes or Ovi ecosystem (Apps, Music, Mapping) with the equivalent experience on the N900. While hardware and capabilities may be similar, their relative accessibility to consumers is not. Does this risk giving the N900 and Maemo a bad name in consumer eyes?

On the other hand 'there's no such thing as bad publicity', says the old maxim, and, ultimately, I think that increasing the number of N900 device owners and awareness of the Maemo platform is healthy for the future of the platform. While I might not personally recommend the N900 to the vast majority of phone purchasers, it is good for them to have the choice; many more people will be able to justify buying the N900 on a contract than buying it SIM-free. Maemo is headed for the wider market and this is just one more step along the way.

Seen any advertising in your location? Let us know in the comments.



Just spotted this banner running on All About Symbian (through one of the ad networks):


Same campaign, but with a more obvious call to action.

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