Apple CEO Tim Cook waves to reporters after his meeting with Indonesian President Joko Widodo at the presidential palace in Jakarta, Indonesia, April 17, 2024.

Willy Kurniawan | Reuters

An apple took the unusual step on Thursday of apologizing for a short advertising video promoting the company’s new iPad Pro tablet after the ad was heavily criticized on social media.

“Our goal is always to celebrate the countless ways users express themselves and bring their ideas to life through iPad,” Apple Vice President of Marketing Thor Meiren said Ad Age, an advertising trade publication. “We missed the mark with this video and we’re sorry.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook posted the position on X, formerly Twitter, on Tuesday. Apple also posted it on YouTube. It showed a variety of creative instruments, including a guitar, piano and metronome, being squeezed by a hydraulic crusher – like recent viral TikTok videos – until all the objects were compressed into the company’s new tablet.

Apple also decided not to run the ad on TV, Ad Age said.

The spot provoked ridicule, including extensive media coverage, as viewers said it made Apple look helpless, and many posted that the destruction of creative tools offended them.

Some critics of Apple claimed that the negative reaction to the ad, rather than free-flowing Apple’s marketing message, is a sign that the company is running out of goodwill among customers. Apple is a major advertiser and has historically been closely associated with TBWAMedia Arts Lab, its longtime ad agency, although it also does some ad development in-house.

This isn’t the first Apple iPad ad in recent years to annoy some customers. In 2018, some people said they were Annoyed by iPad Pro space in which a child asks, “What is a computer?”