Thai mobile network DTAC is encouraging people to “Disconnect to connect”—to put down their mobile devices for face time with friends and family. This spot shows mobile users with invisible companions/parents/colleagues/significant others as they walk on a beach, play guitar, etc. Once the person tucks the device away, the friends and loved ones appear, adding warmth to their lives and putting them back in the moment.
The campaign is just one example of tech companies tapping into De-Teching, one of our “10 Trends for 2011.” Fatigued by their overuse of technology, people are turning off their devices to spend more mindful time offline. Microsoft is using the tagline “Be here now” in a U.S. campaign for its Windows 7 phone, positioned as “designed to get you in and out and back to life.” A commercial shows absorbed smartphoners whose diverted attention—away from an impending staircase, a lingerie-clad wife, circling sharks—prompts onlookers to ask, “Really?”