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John Hodgman as PC and Justin Long as Mac

The "Get a Mac" campaign is a television advertising campaign created for Apple Inc. (Apple Computer, Inc. at the start of the campaign) by TBWA\Media Arts Lab, the company's advertising agency, that ran from 2006 to 2009.[1][2] The advertisements were shown in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Japan and Germany.

Synopsis

The Get a Mac advertisements follow a standard template. They open to a minimalist all-white background, and a man dressed in casual clothes introduces himself as an Apple Macintosh computer ("Hello, I'm a Mac."), while a man in a more formal suit-and-tie combination introduces himself as a Microsoft Windows personal computer ("And I'm a PC.").

The two then act out a brief vignette, in which the capabilities and attributes of Mac and PC are compared, with PC—characterized as formal and somewhat polite, though uninteresting and overly concerned with work—often being frustrated by the more laid-back Mac's abilities. The earlier commercials in the campaign involved a general comparison of the two computers, whereas the later ones mainly concerned Windows Vista and Windows 7.

The aim of this commercial film series is to associate PC users (namely Windows users) with the "unpopular nerd" cliché, while representing Apple Mac users as young, creative, attractive and lucky.

The original American advertisements star actor Justin Long as the Mac, and author and humorist John Hodgman as the PC, and were directed by Phil Morrison. The American advertisements also air on Canadian, Australian, and New Zealand television,[citation needed] and at least 24 of them were dubbed into Spanish, French, German, and Italian. The British campaign stars comedic duo Robert Webb as Mac and David Mitchell as PC while the Japanese campaign features the comedic duo Rahmens. Several of the British and Japanese advertisements, although based on the originals, were slightly altered to better target the new audiences. Both the British and Japanese campaigns also feature several original ads not seen in the American campaign.[citation needed]

The Get a Mac campaign is the successor to the Switch ads that were first broadcast in 2002. Both campaigns were filmed against a plain white background. Apple's former CEO, Steve Jobs, introduced the campaign during a shareholders meeting the week before the campaign started. The campaign also coincided with a change of signage and employee apparel at Apple retail stores detailing reasons to switch to Macs.

The Get a Mac campaign received the Grand Effie Award in 2007.[3] The song in the commercial is called "Having Trouble Sneezing" composed by Mark Mothersbaugh.

On November 10th, 2020, John Hodgman returned and portrayed a PC at the end of Apple's "One More Thing" event; criticizing the upgrades made to the Macintosh lineup earlier in the event.[4]

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The ads play on perceived weaknesses of non-Mac personal computers, especially those running Microsoft Windows, of which PC is clearly intended to be a parody, and corresponding strengths possessed by the Mac OS (such as immunity to circulating viruses and spyware targeted at Microsoft Windows). The target audience of these ads is not devoted PC users but rather, those who are more likely to "swing" towards Apple. Apple realizes that many consumers who choose PCs do so because of their lack of knowledge of the Apple brand. With this campaign, Apple was targeting those users who may not consider Macs when purchasing but may be persuaded to when they view these ads.[5] Each of the ads is about 30 seconds in length and is accompanied by a song called "Having Trouble Sneezing," which was composed by Mark Mothersbaugh. The advertisements are presented below in alphabetical order, not chronological order.

North American campaign

The following is an alphabetical list of the ads that appeared in the campaign shown in the United States, Canada,[6] Australia and New Zealand.

  • Accident—A wheelchair-bound PC, who is wearing casts on his arms, explains that he fell off his desk when someone tripped over his power cord, thus prompting Mac to point out that the MacBook's and MacBook Pro's magnetic power cord prevents such an occurrence. The Macbook pictured at the end demonstrates a harmless cord disconnection.
  • Angel/Devil—Mac gives PC an iPhoto book to view. Suddenly, angel and devil versions of PC appear behind him. T

    The "Get a Mac" campaign is a television advertising campaign created for Apple Inc. (Apple Computer, Inc. at the start of the campaign) by TBWA\Media Arts Lab, the company's advertising agency, that ran from 2006 to 2009.[1][2] The advertisements were shown in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Japan and Germany.