Apple Updates Classic '1984' Spot

By Jonathan Angel

The original aired only once as a paid commercial.

SAN FRANCISCO More than ever, Apple Computer is becoming a music company. To underline that point, chief executive Steve Jobs began his keynote at San Francisco’s Macworld Expo on Tuesday by showing a version of the company’s famous “1984” Super Bowl spot, subtly re-edited to include the company’s best-selling iPod music player.

“This ad was only run on paid television one time, but has become acknowledged as the best ad ever made, so I thought I’d start out by showing it,” Jobs said. Audience members, many too young to have seen the Ridley Scott-directed ad first time out, cheered on the hammer-wielding runner.

This time around, though, she had an iPod strapped to her belt. That’s appropriate because the main product news at Macworld is the $249 iPod Mini, a music player approximately the length and width of a business card. Available in five different colors, it will supplement the existing iPod rather than replace it.

Release of the updated ad had been expected [ Adweek , Jan. 5].

Jobs told the estimated 10,000 attendees, some of whom began lining up at 2:30 a.m. to gain admittance to the show, that as of October the iPod had 31 percent of the music player market. The Apple Music Store has fared even better, according to Jobs, with 70 percent of the legal music downloading business.

Further underlining Apple’s music orientation, Jobs showed a new 15-second silhouetted spot for iPod, similar to others previously created by Omnicom Group agency TBWA\Chiat\Day. The edited version of “1984” is viewable online at It is unclear if it will run elsewhere.