iPhone 4 works with new iHolder

iHolder for iPhone 4
iHolder for iPhone 4

And Nokia haven’t missed the chance to take the michael either. have a look at their helpful site here.

It’s the first real test for Apple since the early accusations of screens that were too easy to scratch on the original iPhone in 2007. How they handle it will be a good barometer for the future of the brand. You can only really tell the power of a brand when things go wrong. If their products are genuinely NOT as good as people believe, slowly but surely the brand values will be undermined and the brand begins to wane.

Somehow though I don’t think this will happen.

And I still want one.

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Home Delivery Network becomes Yodel

This is one of the most clear cut well executed pieces of design I have seen in a few years and I love it.

On it’s own, the change from the old logo here:

The old Home Delivery Network (HDN) logo
The old Home Delivery Network (HDN) logo

To the new one here:

The new Yodel logo
The new Yodel logo

Is not that significant, but then again, logo’s never look too much on their own anyway, do they?

But when you start to add some meat to the bones, it starts to come to life.

Yodel - Dawn to dusk - bringing the brand to life
Yodel - Dawn to dusk - bringing the brand to life

It was done by an agency called The Clearing who have a project page here. My only slight reservation, which could still change its success is this little comment that appears under the YouTube video that they have used to launch the project.

It was posted by someone called mrtikle 1 week ago and he/she says “the company still have no money and continue to treat its staff like dogs”

As I have said many times before, if this rebrand marks a positive change in behaviour, then it may succeed, if it is just a new logo for a still crappy company, then it will still fail. Time will tell, but you can judge for yourself.

Jenson and Lewis attempt to build car in new Vodafone ad viral

Maybe it’s just me as i’m not that big a fan of F1, but this ad seems entirely charmless and seems to have used all of the ridiculously obvious advertising cues to cover this up.

The ‘Plot’ in summary

Two apparent experts deserted in beautiful workshop with bits of an F1 car.

They look slightly helpless.

All of the office staff wander by in awe and wonder as our two heros attempt the build, nudging and winking at the windows.

The real experts (the mechanics) drink tea in the canteen.

Our two drivers pull it off and then whilst claiming its a team effort, pretend they actually did it.

Sorry, this is all a bit dull for my liking. Virals are meant to be fun!

And considering it’s obvious expense and production values, what is this actually doing or saying about the Vodafone brand?

Hello Kitty Engine Oil

There are brand extensions and there are brand extensions too far. This one is perhaps the furthest and least relevant stretches for any brand I have ever seen. Let me introduce you to Hello Kitty motor oil.

Hello Kitty Engine Oil - The stupidest brand extension ever?
Hello Kitty Engine Oil - The stupidest brand extension ever?

Hello Kitty is a hugely successful brand owned by the Japanese company Sanrio and Agip (Azienda Generale Italiana Petroli) who make the oil for them are the huge Italian oil and fuel company based in Milan.

Surely this should be  recipe for cutting edge japanese design mixed with sharp Milanese style?

Err no.

It’s just stupid. Who would possibly think that adding an oil to their car that is given credence by a cartoon cat would do it any good at all? How can the Hello Kitty brand values of cuteness and pink bear any relation to the inside workings of an engine?

It can’t. I’m afraid this just looks a bit silly.

I don’t think Castrol should be too worried about it denting their market share just yet.

Waterstones v. Waterstones.com – I know the difference

I just went out to buy two copies of a book for my wife and her Mum and have learnt a lot about online/offline pricing in my little jaunt around the city.

Firstly there are only two real places you can buy a new book (other than the discount end of line retailers) and that is at Waterstones or WH Smith – who are a retailer of sorts.

Before I went out, I looked on Amazon for  target price. £7.49. Now that sounds like good value to me. £5.50 off list price but none in stock and my customers want this book NOW!

The Clean and Lean Diet 14 Days to Your Best-ever Body from Amazon.co.uk
The Clean and Lean Diet 14 Days to Your Best-ever Body from Amazon.co.uk

So it was off to WH Smith, the confused retailer that seems to have ‘buy one get one half price’ on almost everything. Isn’t that what Thresher did before they went bust too? Well, they had the book in stock, but only one of them, so the deal wasn’t that effective. They had a price of £8.44 online. If I had managed to buy the two of them in the store each book would have cost £9.75, so not far off a decent price.

The Clean and Lean Diet 14 Days to Your Best-ever Body - from WHSmith.co.uk
The Clean and Lean Diet 14 Days to Your Best-ever Body - from WHSmith.co.uk

And then onto Waterstones. The only decent sized book store in Nottingham. I was greeted by a friendly young man as I entered and asked him where on the four floors I would find this book. He confirmed they had five in stock at the full price of £12.99 on the third floor.

So I asked the kller questions.

Why could I buy the same book from them online for much less?

The Clean and Lean Diet 14 Days to Your Best ever Body from Waterstones.com
The Clean and Lean Diet 14 Days to Your Best ever Body from Waterstones.com

The answer?

Apparently, and I quote “Because they’re on the Internet, they don’t have the overheads we do.”

Oh, that’s it then, they’re not part of the same group or anything simple, or even based on exactly the same central distribution depot.

I wrote a piece a few weeks ago saying that their new logo was a bit silly and pointless, but did give them the get out clause that a new logo can be worthwhile if it marks a change in behaviour.

You judge for yourself whether this traditional retailer is behaving any different now it has an online presence, or if it is still making the same mistakes as Borders and all the other smaller book stores that have folded before them.

If you offer the same price online and offline (like Tesco and Asda and Sainsbury’s and everyone else with any retailing skill does) you may find that people still buy from your stores rather than looking at you as a showroom or a place of last resort.

Knocking Live Video – Wow

This is seriously clever stuff. Live video that is just becoming available with the iPhone 4G, but that is already up and running as part of a FREE app for any other iPhone. I think I may be playing with this for a few days. Can someone else get it too, so I can ‘knock you up’ (so to speak).

My user name is johnnylyle so please knock away.

The new iPhone 4G

Okay, I want one.

I’m not sure how they claim it’s 24% thinner and i’m not sure i need to be able to edit video on my phone or have face to face video chats (like my old Nokia phone used to be able to do years ago) but Apple seem to have, yet again, hit the design about right and will have people queueing up to own the new iPhone 4G.

Steve Jobs didn’t look too well, but he certainly got the crowd whooping in his latest keynote. He highlighted eight of the claimed 100 new features of the iPhone 4G device. How many of these will we need or use?

Who cares? I still want one.