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Is it that most celebrities are instantly attracted to nice shiny objects? We could be unkind and say that, but we won’t. Well, not quite.
The Hype and Price Go Hand in Hand
An iPhone, without doubt, has a certain status attached to it but it’s not clear why. Recently, the #iPhoneAt10 hashtag went viral on twitter on the anniversary of the release of the original iPhone. Unfortunately for Apple, many of the uses of the hashtag were to mention that the iPhone at 10 is really just the iPhone at 1, but bigger. However much Apple and their legion of users deny it, this isn’t really as far from the truth as you might think. And yet, the release of any new iPhone is cause for massive public hysteria. Of course, celebrities are not immune to this.
If an iPhone was $80, instead of $800, would celebrities be begging for pre-release handsets for themselves? Probably not. iCloud has exposed – in every sense – the private photos and videos of a massive group of stars. So why do those stars still trust Apple to keep their data safe? These are questions for which there is no obvious answer. Well, except for the marketing skills of Apple.
Loyal Apple Fanbase
What would be if Samsung, Sony, Motorola or even Google give a free handset to a celebrity? There would still be a good chance that it will get put in a cupboard somewhere or given to a friend, right after their agent has been on to Apple to tell them about it. An iPhone is a status symbol for reasons purely down to the belief Apple have instilled in their fan-base. They charge what they want in the knowledge that it will still sell. They give away hundreds in the knowledge that a single shot of a celeb using an iPhone will push sales up. And celebrities like to be associated with success, so they lap up the freebies and associate schmoozing from Apple executives. It’s a never-ending upwards money spiral that shows no sign of slowing.
We’re not saying iPhones aren’t very decent smartphones, of course they are. But we do wonder if iOS was an open source operating system in the way Android is, whether someone would have produced a better iOS smartphone than the iPhone. Our money would be on yes, they probably would.
But back to the subject of celebs and their iPhones.
The iPhone has attained a cultural status that is afforded to very few brands or products. A good measure is not how often you see them in TV shows or movies, that is all about product placement. But rather how they reference in popular culture. The companies Coca Cola, Pepsi, Reebok, Cadillac, the Ford Mustang, Harley Davidson, Nintendo and even the AK47 are mentioned countless times in books, songs, tv and movie scripts (not usually product placement in those cases). So they take on a reputation that goes beyond their individual qualities.
And so it is with the iPhone. Even people who have never touched an iPhone in their life are familiar with the standard iPhone ringtones. Such is their presence in everyday life.
Their Lifestyle Calls For It
Which brings us back to celebrities and their iPhones. We wouldn’t suggest for a second that all celebs are too dumb to recognize when they’re being played by advertisers, far from it. What we are saying, though, is that celebrities believe in hype. Their world revolves around it, their lives revolve around it, and their income revolves around it. So why wouldn’t they embrace it? Apple are masters of style over substance, so it’s probably inevitable that they will appeal to people in the style over substance business.
Shiny things appeal to shiny things.