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Samsung’s print ad in the TOI newspaper uses QR code to plug its 'Circle to Search' feature

The front page ad adds to Samsung’s marketing of its latest S24 Ultra smartphone, which features Google’s Circle to Search.

In January, Samsung announced its flagship S24 smartphone series, with a lot of emphasis on AI. There is one feature that the brand has extensively promoted through various advertising campaigns since its launch- Circle to Search. 

Circle to Search is Google’s newly introduced feature that enables users to search anything on their Android phone without switching apps. With gestures such as circling, highlighting, scribbling or tapping, the user can look up anything on the screen instead of doing a separate Google search. 

The brand has now taken a print route to ad a little more flair to its new offerings. In a front page print ad placed in the Times of India newspaper, readers are faced with an artful depiction of different cultural elements of the country, with the bold heading ‘Epic Search is Here’. The ad also contains a QR code, which invites users to buy the Samsung S24 Ultra with a video presentation of the feature. Also, the copy carries a note that says ‘Circle to Search with Google’, that is because the feature is essentially powered by Google.

Samsung's print ad in the Times of India
Samsung's print ad in the Times of India

Upon scanning the QR code, the viewer is prompted with a video that brings the static ad image into action, with each element in the graphic coming into action with circles- showcasing how the feature functions. 

Notably, Circle to Search is only available in the following devices:

  • Google Pixel Fold

  • Google Pixel 8 Pro

  • Google Pixel 8

  • Google Pixel 7 Pro

  • Google Pixel 7

  • Google Pixel 7a 

  • Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra

  • Samsung Galaxy S24+

  • Samsung Galaxy S24

  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra

  • Samsung Galaxy S23+

  • Samsung Galaxy S23 Series

  • Samsung Galaxy Z Flip5

  • Samsung Galaxy Z Fold5

  • Samsung Tab S9

The concept was more comprehensively demoed in Samsung’s earlier ad film unveiled in January. The film depicted a couple lounging on a couch, consuming content on their smartphone, when the guy starts Googling a dog-shaped lamp that he spotted on the screen. After his struggle with inadequate prompts coupled with underwhelming search results, his partner chimes in and shows him the magic of ‘Circle to Search’.

In February, Samsung also partnered with Transport for London (TfL) to reimagine the iconic Tube map with the Galaxy S24. This collaboration involved a two-week campaign at London's Circle line, during which the historic Harry Beck Tube Map was updated to showcase and popularise the 'Circle to Search'.

As part of this initiative, Samsung crafted a limited-edition circular Tube map, displayed at five key stations: King’s Cross, Blackfriars, Westminster, Liverpool Street, and Paddington. While this special map didn’t replace the traditional Tube map, it offered a visually striking and temporarily functional guide, playfully rebranding the Circle line as the 'Circle to Search' line.

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