Dissecting the Microsoft Graffiti Surface Ads


Microsoft started its ads carpet-bombing yesterday by releasing a slew of covert graffiti Ads for its Surface devices. One of the Ads is shown above (borrowed from The Verge), and immediately I saw it a few things jumps to mind, and I have searched the Net and discovered almost everybody missed the subtle messages hidden in this picture above.

First let me start on the background. Why did Microsoft choose an old and dilapidated building to paint this Graffiti, they could have chosen a bridge or a nicer background, right? The house is standing next to a White-washed building. All this denotes the Old Windows Infrastructure, old and beaten of course. This Old building is Surfacing something new (pun intended). The white-washed building is the walled garden called Apple platform competing with this old platform.

Now, see those four lamps above the Graffiti? Five of them are burning (One is behind the board) and one is not burning. That denotes the release cycles of Windows 8, the fifth lamp is not burning because Windows/Surface is almost done. All the lamps burning will signify in this case that Windows and Surface fully ready.

Now comes my favorite part, the Stop signpost and the bikes. Anyone remembers what Steve Jobs called Windows when comparing it with the Mac? He called Windows a Truck, that trucks are dependable utility vehicles to get the job done, and Macs are Sports cars that you love to ride in the weekends or when you are feeling sexy, etc etc. Now, read what is on the signpost: “Truck Restriction” it says! Is this a coincidence? I think not.

The sign is saying Truck restriction here, this is a play-ground for the young and hip, denoted by those bikes. Look at that shiny Vespa posing for you right there like a model on a sidewalk. All these denotes hip youngsters. This Ad is telling you, “Windows is truck-no-more“, it is the playground of hipsters. That is what we are getting with Windows 8 and Surface. Sorry old people, Elvis has left the building! Microsoft cannot build its future on old dilapidated OS, it needs the new generation on-board, that is the future. You either take it or leave it. That is the strong message Microsoft has been sending out with Windows 8, the bold move to remove anything recognizable in Windows is a telling sign. You either come on-board and embrace the future, or be left behind in the dust of history.


I love this new bold Microsoft. The time of mediocrity is past, the time of a new future is here. Welcome new Microsoft, hello Sexy!

Image Credit: The Verge

14 thoughts on “Dissecting the Microsoft Graffiti Surface Ads

  1. There are six “lamps”, the Vespa is in the street & Windows 8 (Pro) will have the Desktop of Windows 7 in order to run the legacy applications that users will still expect to run on an MS OS.


  2. Geez…wonder how many wasted hours and money was spent on all these “subtle messages”. If Microsoft had just photographed a cute girl smiling using Inwdows 8 it would’ve been 100 times better. They could have even have parked a silly vespa next to her if microsoft feels the need to be seen as a hipster-friendly company. Ridiculous.


  3. You know what is particularly shit about this though? The fact that it is on heritage brickwork – most street artists here in Melbourne distinctly try to stay off heritage brickwork unless its already been painted on, but here is Microsoft just going for it. Nice work!

    That was said in a sarcastic tone.


    • Yeah, you’re right, I guess. But right here in the states, these are worn-out buildings, they arent considered an heritage, more of a nuisance, to be torn down when rebuilding the hood.


    • I completely agree with you. The fact these were painted on old brick buildings is terrible. Also, I don’t know if anyone used one of these, but the 199 will come soon. No one is buying these things at 599, 499 or 399. Any doubts? Just ask HP.


  4. This is just so cool. I love your vision, McAkins. You could grasp such a subtle message! Are you sure you don’t work for Microsoft? :D
    Anyway, looks like we’ll soon be able to author a “The Da Vinci Code”.. Oops, I mean, “The Microsoft Code” :D


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