Been so busy these past few weeks I didn't get a chance to mention this ground-breaking new media that appeared on Tokyo trains about a month ago.
Japanese printing companies have started offering advertisers the ability to display moving pictures on paper advertisements.
The above ad announces the debut of a new mascara from Lancome that uses a vibrating applicator brush. The poster is made from electronic paper—a technology that allows paper to be written and rewritten repeatedly. So what you're looking at is essentially a paper poster hanging from the ceiling of a subway train in which the image changes.
Similarly some train stations are now equipped with poster banks for electronic paper ads that can refresh with new images at specific intervals. If you're an advertiser and you rent the space, you can replace the ad whenever you want while sitting right at your office desk, since the wall frames are connected to PHS phone networks that tap into the internet.
I nearly got double-take whiplash from this poster series that was splashed all over Tokyo's Shibuya Station the other day (click for a larger view). Advertising MAX, a canned coffee brand from Coca-Cola Japan, the poster, roughly translated, screams "Totally super sweet coffee [that] gives you energy to the MAX".
I'd love to peek inside the creative/art directors' heads to see what else is lurking in there besides fragments of Superman and R. Crumb.
According to Walter Mossberger, who reviewed Sony's newest mini notebook, the VAIO P, for the Wall Street Journal, the device disappoints on performance.
"Vaio P is mainly undone because it comes with Vista Home Premium, the
edition of Windows that is sluggish and a memory hog. . . And
the Vista problem is made worse by the processor inside the machine,
which is an especially slow version of the Intel Atom chip often used
in netbooks.. . .[In tests], programs launched painfully slowly, delays
were common and start-up and reboot times were glacial. . .Video playback was choppy. . ."
But the posters SONY has been using to announce the launch in Japan are eye-catching and effective.
Who wouldn't want a sexy little computer you can carry around in your back pocket?
It looks like NY's Metropolitan Train Authority has (finally) awoken to the revenue opportunities afforded by implementing Japanese-style advertising on trains and in train stations.
Last month, MTA partnered with the Discovery Channel and fully "wrapped" three train cars, inside and out, with visuals related to the network's "Cities of the Underworld" program. Additionally, some station fixtures like stairwells and turnstiles were similarly outfitted.
MTA is calling this "innovative," and it probably feels that way to some New Yorkers. Yawn.
In Japan, they call this train jacking, and it's been done for years—and not with just three train cars—but with entire trains, often on multiple lines, in multiple cities.
For details of a particularly innovative Japanese train jacking, check out this article we posted earlier in the year.
The Panasonic NA-FR10S1 combination-washer/dryer uses special eco-friendly technology. This poster, which appeared in trains around Japan, very effectively conveys the point that the machine uses 25 fewer liters of water to complete each load of wash.
Apart from the numbingly clumsy and dull English copy (sadly, even today most Japanese companies can't be bothered to hire professional, native-English-speaking copywriters), the posters are eye-catching, and the copy does the job for the vast majority of passengers who are, obviously, Japanese.