By Barry Janoff
November 26, 2012: Samsung has NBA star Lebron James touting its Galaxy Note II in national commercials, showing how the phone makes all aspects of his life easier.
Now, Microsoft has NFL quarterback Cam Newton not only showing how the Windows Phone 8 makes his life easier, but also helps him during a cooking challenge issued by his mom.
The second-year player for the Carolina Panthers gets to customize his "Live Tiles" screen to adapt to his lifestyle, which includes "learning to cook or building a brand," as he explains in the commercial.
The ad broke this week during sports programming, and will run tonight during ESPN's Monday Night Football when the Panthers visit the Philadelphia Eagles. It is part of a Microsoft series for the product that also has commercials starring Jessica Alba and Gwen Stefani.
"I'm trying to be the best," Newton explains in the spot. "It doesn't matter if I'm learning to cook (via the AllRecipes app on his phone) or building a brand. And don't even get me started with Xbox. I'll take on anyone, any time"
He then relates that his "motivation comes from a lot of places. But my inspiration comes from someone special."
We then see a photo of his mom on the phone, followed by a picture of a pie she has baked along with the challenge, "Beat this."
Cut to a shot of Newton wearing a patissier (pastry chef) outfit and hat, standing in a kitchen along with two friends. Newton has just baked his own dessert. "Now you know that looks good," he says as he photographs the creation with his phone and sends to his mom.
"That's me. And this is my Windows phone."
A voiceover then chimes in, "New Windows' phone. Re-invented around you." (See the full spot here.)
Newton's other marketing deals include Under Armour and EA Sports, both of which show up as apps on Newton's phone display during the commercial, as does the Cam Newton Foundation.