updated 09:50 pm EST, Mon January 24, 2011
Sprint may have softened Evo Shift 4G ad for Apple
Sprint may have deliberately softened an ad for the Evo Shift 4G to please Apple. The spot, which focuses on a series of quotes praising the phone, noticeably dropped a final quote that touted the Android device as superior to the iPhone 4. It's unclear when the change took effect, since the web version (below) is 'clean,' but the more confrontational ad stopped roughly at the same time as Verizon iPhone ads began.
The decision doesn't necessarily amount to any definitive sign but takes on parallels to Verizon's own ad strategy for the Motorola Droid. It originally launched the smartphone with ads mocking the iPhone but grew silent with its direct comparisons shortly into 2010, roughly when Apple and Verizon began their iPhone testing and co-development in earnest.
Sprint has lately changed its tone in public comments on the iPhone. Where on the launch of the Evo 4G it was eager to champion its advantages, its CEO Dan Hesse and other representatives have been deferrent to Apple, declining to comment themselves other than to express a desire for the iPhone on the network. Unofficially, many expect that Verizon secured a pseudo-exclusive on a CDMA iPhone 4 but that Sprint and possibly a T-Mobile GSM version could sign on for the iPhone 5. [via Beatweek]