Google takes selling Pixel phones to a hilarious new level (but the joke’s on Google) | ZDNet

A victory, of sorts.


Screenshot by ZDNet

It doesn’t seem long ago that I was marveling at Google‘s sense of humor.

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Somehow, the company had found more and more entertaining ways of encouraging you to switch to its Pixel phones.

Here, recently, was a mesmerizing ad that wanted you to disappear into a mindful trance, as your data arrives on your wonderful new phone.

The whole thing was deeply amusing. It almost persuaded me that Google was deeply serious about selling its phones.

I was riveted, therefore, to see that the company had released yet another Pixellated entreaty.

This time, it promises you more than mere peace of mind. It promises to teach you Korean slang.

My grasp of Korean slang is imperfect, especially as ESPN no longer shows Korean baseball, where some of the finest tech companies own teams and search for exalted pride.

Actually, I know no Korean slang whatsoever so this ad was enormously helpful.

I learned how to say girlfriend or boyfriend in a cool Korean way.

I also learned how to say male friend and person friend, important distinctions in today’s world.

I even learned that there are a million words in the Korean dictionary, surely many more than there are in the American.

Some of the other details in this ad are delightful. Look closely and the presenter’s Wi-Fi network is called “WiFi Art Thou Romeo.”

If that isn’t humor of a high class, I’m not sure we can learn Korean slang together.

But something about this ad began to bother me. First, it seems Google didn’t even shoot the Korean language parts. They come from a different YouTube video posted by someone called Renda. At the time of writing, it has 954 views.

Moreover, on several occasions I’ve been contacted by world citizens annoyed that they can’t get hold of a Pixel phone in their country.

So I went to Google’s support site to check where the phones are actually available. For the Pixel 4a 5G and the Pixel 5, the list looks like this: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States.

For the Pixel 4a no-5G-around-here, Italy, Singapore and Spain are added. Lucky them.

And, well, that’s it. No Pixels for you, Korea.

So, sadly, here is Google teaching you Korean slang, yet not encouraging Koreans to enjoy American slang with either a Pixel or even a customized Pixel ad.

Which seems like a missed opportunity, one that may make one or two iPhone users titter.

But wait, Koreans can get Google Nest Audio, the second generation of Google Nest Hub and Google Home.

I clutch at straws, always.



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