Apple’s new ad means you no longer need a case for the iPhone—and that’s pretty smart marketing

Maybe Apple doesn’t appreciate the fact that it’s spent millions of dollars developing increasingly thin, sleek, aesthetically-pleasing iPhones, only to see all their hard work put in plastic cases. Maybe Apple wants to counter the popular belief that an unsecured iPhone is a sneaky form of planned obsolescence.

Or maybe Apple’s Ceramic Shield Glass is actually Tougher than any other smartphone glassand actually provides Four times more drop protection Like the previous iPhone.

Whatever the reason, here’s a new ad Apple released last week. (It’s a bit slow, so feel free to jump to the :23 mark.)

Clearly Apple thinks it’s not a big deal to fall without a table. And maybe, just maybe, phone cases are unnecessary.

But both things are not necessarily true.

While phone durability is a concern for most of us, some people see phones without a casing as a status symbol. Phone “Careless” both indicates separation and means: “Broken phone? No big deal. I’m not hooked on this thing. Plus, I’ll just buy a new one.”

not me. Over the years I’ve cracked three different screens, and went around with a broken screen for about six months. (Good thing I’m married; one study shows Nine out of ten women rate negatively on the date their phone screen is broken.) At this point, just seeing a phone without a cover makes me feel uncomfortable.

But that doesn’t mean Apple’s new ad is ineffective. I would still use the case, but I like the idea that newer phones are more durable. The fact that I worry about damaging my phone makes me the perfect audience for Apple’s new ad.

Wouldn’t the screen crack if an unshielded iPhone fell off a table? Great – because it means mine, since it’s always in a case, it should also be less likely to break.

That is the real point of advertising.

Apple isn’t saying, “Phone cases are a waste of money.” Apple knows that no matter how bold the claim or how clever the ad, most people won’t give up on their phone cases.

But the company also knows that most people worry about damaging their phones and therefore would appreciate the idea of ​​a more durable device.

Which, since the natural innovation curve has resulted in phone product development that is incremental rather than revolutionary, it can be easy for some people to decide to stash money to buy the latest phone.

Sometimes, consider marketing your product at the extreme end of quality or safety. “Will it Blend?” Like the Blendtec series? Videos showing a blender pulverizing things like marbles, golf clubs, and yes, an iphone,

Even though no one would ever use it that way… the fact that they could Might provide even more assurance for common use cases.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.