Apple have always made excellent ads. Microsoft, on the other hand, have tended to make utterly crap ones. Where do you want to go today? was pretty good, but not great. And the Wow! ones were just dire.
And then Apple released their Hello! I'm a Mac ads. Brilliant ads. Really entertaining. With one teensy little flaw. Some genius at Apple, having hired a comedy duo, had the bright idea of getting the straight man to be the Mac and the funny guy to be the PC. We were clearly supposed to look at them and think, well, he may be failing in quite a likable and humourous way, but he's still failing. Whereas what we really thought was, well, he may be likably and humourously failing, but he's still likable and humourous. The ads didn't make me want to buy a PC, but they did make me want to make friends with one. And they made Macs look not only boring but smug. Let's face it, Macs probably are smug: it springs sadly and inevitably from being better. But the last thing Apple's advertising should do is draw attention to it.
And now it looks as if this trend-bucking from Apple has given Microsoft some much-needed inspiration. The new Windows ads are just excellent. They make me want to use Windows and meet people who use Windows and get annoyed with Apple for being so rude about all these nice talented decent people.
Apple still make the best operating system, but a lot of the other stuff they used to get consistently right appears to be going wrong.