If you’re an Apple fanatic and are used to using your MacBook to search for information like sales tax compliance with state and local tax services, or your iPad for watching movies , or your iPhone for browsing on-the-go, you had better hope you never end up in the world of the Amazing Spiderman.
The 2012 movie from Sony reflects a world very much like our own, except the appropriate response to a dangerous spider’s bite is to don a spandex costume and fight crime, rather than head to the hospital. Intriguingly, it also seems this universe is one in which Apple never made an impact.
Personal Product Placement
The Amazing Spiderman shows us a whole host of high-tech gadgets and personal technology, from scientific research laboratories full of laptops and computers to teens using tablets to watch online videos of superheroes in action. The masked man himself even uses his smartphone from time to time.
In many ways it is a valid reflection of our own tech-obsessed society. Except, of course, that none of these products display the Apple logo. They are all proud Sony products.
It’s unsurprising — after all, as The Amazing Spiderman is a Sony film, why would they wish to give any screen time to their competitor? Paid product placement has a fine tradition in all kinds of movies, from James Bond’s predilection for Aston Martin cars to the cringe-inducing reference to Converse shoes in I, Robot.
It only makes sense for Sony to cut out the middleman and just jam their own movies full of their available products. Microsoft’s Bing search engine also got a showing, rather than the much more popular Google.
Of course, real-world reasons for Apple’s invisibility are kind of boring. What is much more intriguing is to wonder what the in-film reasons are for Sony’s dominance. How could they explain away the Apple technology?
In our world, Sony has only a tiny fraction of the market – accounting for less than 1% of US cell phone and tablet sales and less than 3% of personal computer sales. However, in the world of superpower-giving spiders, their products are ubiquitous.
Could it be that some kind of irradiated cockroach led Steve Jobs to abandon his company and instead devote himself to a life of crime-fighting? Maybe Sergey Brin and Larry Page chose another direction for their Stanford research project, discarding the idea of developing a search engine in favor of mechanized robots that could more effectively enforce their philosophy of not being evil.
Sony’s dominance could be due to something even more sinister – perhaps they conducted some early research into mind-control, making their marketing and advertising super effective.