It appears Microsoft either made a mistake by posting new Windows commercials or was just flat-out embarrassed by the initial response.
The ads, titled “Windows 8 Training Camp,” featured groups of people not speaking English and doing some wacky stuff like shaving watermelons and playing ping pong with their butts. No Windows 8 PC’s appeared in the commercials.
Here’s how Neowin’s John Callaham described them:
Today, Microsoft uploaded a trio of new Windows 8 TV ads on its official Windows YouTube channel and, well … there’s just no other way to say it. These ads, all under the “Training Camp” title, are some of the oddest we have ever seen that have been made to promote any version of Windows.
And from WPCentral’s Sam Sabri:
No words to describe what you just watched right? I’m wondering whether these are brilliant or mad. One thing we can agree on, they’re better than those Palm Pre ads from a few years back.
Now, though, those videos are listed as private and you can’t watch them. Maybe Microsoft saw the some of the reaction and acted quickly. Judging by the comments on these two stories and the chatter on Twitter, that may have been the case:
@jbrodkin “Lets make these very bizarre ads and get EVERYONE talking about them”
— Carlin (@subglass) May 9, 2013
— Sushovan De (@sushovande) May 8, 2013
Certainly an interesting way for Microsoft to promote Windows 8. There are some absolutely ridiculous ads that have been successful, but it’s pretty tough to pull off.
But the funny thing is that while these may have been a swing-and-a-miss, Microsoft’s raucous wedding ad released last week that attempts to differentiate Windows Phone from Apple and Samsung was pretty damn good. You can’t win ‘em all, I guess.
UPDATE, 6:17 P.M.
Now, one of the ads named “Watermelon” is not private. It’s supposed to promote the “power of touch.” Watch and enjoy:
UPDATE, 6:20 P.M.
Now, the Watermelon video is back to being private. I watched it while it was up, and basically, it showed three different guys turning a watermelon into art. The first shaves off parts of the skin and is pretty proud of himself. The second sticks his finger into the watermelon and then sweet juice pours out like magic. The third looks confused and struggles as he oddly touches the watermelon from all angles. But then, the watermelon breaks apart to unveil a beautiful … origami-looking thing. A Windows logo comes up with the words “The Power of Touch.”
You gotta see it to believe it.
Editor’s note: An incorrect reference to the language spoken by the actors has been removed since this post was originally published.