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The weirdest and most cringe-worthy phone ads ever

HTC just released a delightfully stupid rap video to big up the One M8 and extract the urine out of rival phones, but this isn’t the first time a mobile company has come up with an eccentric way to advertise its new hardware. Here’s our pick of the strangest and most rage-inducing phone ads of all time…


Back in August 2013, we were a little worried that HTC had lost its marbles by spending a frankly ludicrous amount of money on a bat-sh*t mental advert starring man-of-the-moment Robert Downey Jr and some CGI hipster trolls. Aside from confusing us all by making us think HTC stood for Humongous Tinfoil Catamaran, the advert also failed to show any shots of the actual product, in this case the sexy One M7 smartphone. Frankly, all they needed to do was train a camera on that slab of metal sexiness and we’d have been bought ten – and it wouldn’t have cost HTC a reported billion dollars.

Well, now HTC apparently stands for ‘Hold The Crown’, according to a suitably tongue-in-cheek rap video that’s been doing the web rounds. Looks like HTC is tightening the purse strings when it comes to marketing, as the total budget must have been about fifty quid. You can see the video in full below, if you’ve got two minutes to waste.


Samsung has been hurling bags of flaming dog poo at Apple in their ads for bloody ages now, but never has it been more cringe-worthy than the efforts around the time of the iPhone 6 launch. The two tech support geeks are the kind of lovable characters that you wouldn’t mind shoving in front of a burning petrol tanker, while the obvious gut-stabs are about as amusing as a bout of mega-herpes.

Here’s just one of the delightful TV spots, ribbing on how Apple apparently diverted attention from the phone with its shiny new watch.

Sony (Ericsson)

Who can forget this horrific Sony Ericsson advert for the Xperia Play gaming phone? Not us, that’s for sure – mostly because it haunted our bloody dreams and had us screaming ourselves awake, drenched in puddles of our own…sweat.

Featuring some appetite-dousing back-room thumb surgery on one of the mobile world’s most beloved mascots, the Sony Ericsson commercial presumably only aired after the watershed, or kids across the globe would have been reduced to blubbering sacks of sorrow. Watch it below, if you dare.


A feature that manufacturers often forget to mention with their latest handset is the fact that it can actually make calls, but Apple didn’t forget with the iPhone 5c. Oh, no. Instead, it dedicated an entire minute-long ad to this ground-breaking ability, complete with an obligatory mix of races, colours and creeds. And of course, most of the characters featured are of the ‘wacky’ variety, to make it irritating as well as pointless.

The one saving grace is that the tagline, ‘for the colorful’, is one of Apple’s least obnoxious. Sure, they’ve gone and spelled colourful wrong, but that’s still far better than ‘bigger than bigger’, ‘the biggest thing to happen to iPhone since iPhone’ and our personal favourite, ‘If you don’t have an iPhone, well, you don’t have an iPhone’. Excuse us while we go punch a gorilla in the face.

Seen any more horrific phone ads? Share them with us in the comments below.


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