The best tech commercial I saw during the 83rd Academy Awards last night wasn’t for a tech company at all, but for a car. While the ad doesn’t mention the deal directly, each Hyundai Equus comes with a ‘free’ iPad in lieu of a manual printed on dead trees. The ad closes by telling the viewer that this isn’t just a app, but the owner’s manual for the car as well.
The ad also promotes a free app that demonstrates the car and guides users through options and options for buying the vehicle.
Of course the ‘free iPad’ isn’t actually free. The Hyundai Equus has a base MSRP of $58,000 and the 16GB WiFi-only iPad’s cost is built into it. You’d think for that kind of money Hyundai would spring for a version with more storage and perhaps 3G.
The free iPad can be used just like any other iPad of couse and Hyundai owners can do things like book service appointements right from their iPads. As much as I like the idea of having an iPad instead of a paper manual for my car, I’m not sure I’d want to have to worry about a dead battery when I need to access the manual during a roadside emergency.