updated 11:05 pm EDT, Wed May 12, 2010
Apple airs first new TV ad since iPad on sale
Apple tonight began airing its first iPad TV ad since it began selling the tablet last month. The 30-second spot is a rapid-fire tour of features that proudly claims that the iPad is "already a revolution... and it's only just beginning."
The "What is iPad?" commercial amplifies the amount of detail seen in the lone pre-release ad and talks about virtually all the main features but also ventures into third-party apps: Theodore Gray's The Elements, the Popular Science magazine reader and a music notation app all play a part. Apple goes so far as to tout that the iPad's battery "lasts all day" and that the tablet is usable no matter which way it's held.
At present, the ad is nearly unneeded as Apple has had little trouble selling iPads with its existing marketing. It has already had to push the iPad's international sales back one month and just today delayed new shipments both at home and abroad by as much as a week.
The ad is a direct nod back to Apple's classic promo for the Newton PDA (see below), which asked "what is Newton?" and even included some of the same references to a "magical" device. Unlike the original pen-based handheld, however, the iPad has already launched to much greater success and sold 300,000 units on its first day, or more than the Newton managed in its entire lifetime.