Check out some of these notable cameos of Windows 10 and other Microsoft products at the movies.
Microsoft recently announced Windows 10 reached a significant milestone: the operating system now has 600 million active users. Windows 10 is catching on in a way that Windows 8 never quite did, and it appears that it’s hit critical mass.
I believe a sign of mainstream success for any commercial product is when we start to see it in places where art imitates life. For many years, Hollywood has been a major free advertising platform for the Mac. The Mac still dominates the silver screen, but I have been noticing some surprising changes over the past year—there are more Windows 10 devices making their acting debut.
Windows 10 and Microsoft Surfaces Appear in Major Motion Pictures
The way technology is depicted in a movie or TV show is significant for a number of reasons. For one, it immediately dates the work—you see a BlackBerry 950 on the screen and you know you can strap in for a turn-of-the-century Y2K era adventure. Aside from that, when technology plays a cameo role, it has to pass a certain test of credibility. If the audience sees a character logging on to America Online and thinks, “Um, yes there’s no way a real hacker would use AOL,” then the filmmakers have failed.
The fact that we are now seeing Windows 10 and Microsoft hardware in movies with little suspension of disbelief speaks to the moment we’re in for Microsoft tech. Perhaps it means that Windows 10 has hit critical mass. Or maybe it signals a major marketing push by Microsoft. Either way, here are some movies I managed to recognize not only Windows 10 in this past year but even devices such as the Microsoft Surface and Lumia smartphone.
Doctor Strange (2016)
Stephen Strange, an arrogant but expert neurosurgeon, injures his hands – vital to his job – in a car accident. Finding it hard to accept that he won’t be able to practice as a surgeon anymore, Strange tries numerous surgeries to heal them. The surgeries are unsuccessful in restoring the full functionality of his hands.
Strange discovers Jonathan Pangborn, a former paraplegic whose legs were healed after a visit to Nepal. Stephen is directed to visit Kamar-Taj, in Nepal. There he meets Mordo, a sorcerer who leads him to the Ancient One. The Ancient One reveals her powers leading him to different dimensions and worlds. Her objective is to train Strange to battle an evil force within the Dark Dimension.
Several scenes in Dr. Strange prominently show off Microsoft Surface, Windows 10 and Skype video services.
Get Out (2017)
Chris Washington reluctantly decides to go on a trip with his girlfriend Rose Armitage, to meet her parents. On their way, some bizarre incidents occur. Rose, who was driving, hits a deer and is stopped by a white police officer, who asks for Chris’s identification. Rose intervenes in anger considering Chris was not driving. After resolving the situation, they continue on their journey.
Chris finally meets Rose’s parents, neurosurgeon Dean and psychiatrist/hypnotherapist Missy, and her brother Jeremy. But things become uncomfortable at dinner. Chris notices that the black workers at the estate are uncannily compliant. The story features many twists and unexpected turns.
Several scenes feature Microsoft products such as the Surface and defunct Microsoft Lumia phones.
Frank Adler is raising a child prodigy – his young niece Mary in Florida. His intention is to provide a normal school life for Mary, but those plans are disrupted when her mathematical abilities come to the attention of her teacher and school principal. His estranged mother, Evelyn, learns of this and begins a custody battle to separate Frank and Mary to help finish the work her late mother started.
The Windows 10’s hero image shows up on a budget laptop in a courtroom scene used by Frank’s lawyer during the custody hearing. There was also a retina MacBook bought for Mary by her very affluent grandmother, of course.
Jack Reacher Never Go Back (2016)
Investigator Jack Reacher is about to make an arrest of Army major, Susan Turner, who is accused of treason. Suspecting something is not right, Jack seeks to find out the truth and prove the innocence of Turner. Jack will end up being accused of aiding and abetting a criminal. Jack goes undercover to seek the truth and reveal the conspiracy that involves the death of U.S. soldiers.
Again, Windows 10, Surface, and even Microsoft Edge turn up on screen.
Whether these are just a reflection of what technology looks like or paid placements by Microsoft, it’s actually refreshing. Not just because it’s not a Mac for a change, but also you are not seeing your usual mock, unrealistic operating system that doesn’t exist. These appearances probably won’t help to build the product’s image for better or worse; since the average user could care less. But for those of us in technology circles, it’s definitely nice to see. If you were to base your impression of technology use solely on movies and TV shows, you might forget that Microsoft has had a 90%+ market share for years. You might think instead that everyone, from middle schoolers to covert government agents, was using Apple products. That simply isn’t true, though, and now it seems that art is catching up to reality.
Have you been seeing more Microsoft products in movies and TV shows lately? If so, let us know in the comments.