French mobile giant Orange is the latest telco to encourage responsible use of its smartphones, starting with a spot that touchingly charts the relationship between a father and his teenage daughter.
The ad, created by Publicis Conseil and directed by Katia Lewkowicz, is centered around the father wrapping up a smartphone as a gift for his daughter, thinking about the implications as he does. We see scenes where he's telling her to get off her laptop or tablet, or watching friends glued to their phone or obsessively following make-up tutorials. He encourages her to appreciate the real world that's out there, and be "careful" but "don't be scared."
The film is nuanced and not too preachy: "I know I'm not perfect either," the father says as we see he and his wife busy on their phones as the kids have fun, or deciding to clap during her dance performance while other parents shoot it. The film ends with him handing over the new phone, to her delight, at a scenic spot. His voiceover reads, "Promise me you'll never forget how beautiful this world is."
It's a subject matter that will doubtless strike a chord with many parents of teens, grappling with the dilemma of letting their kids have modern technology or protecting them from it.
The two-minute version of the film aired on French TV channel TF1 last night, and the campaign will be rolled out across all of Orange's 27 countries across TV, cinema, digital, print and outdoor.
Orange has launched a series of tools across its products to encourage responsible use of tech. They include a "pause internet" button that can suddenly cut off the family wi-fi, parental control apps and a "do not disturb" feature for drivers.