Casting Call: "young fun people" with "good hands" for Palm commercials; Updated: More Codenames | webOS Nation

Casting Call: "young fun people" with "good hands" for Palm commercials; Updated: More Codenames 64

by Jonathan I Ezor#IM Tue, 28 Dec 2010 2:27 pm EST

For those who may have been wondering whether and how HP was planning on advertising Palm smartphones in the coming year, a recent casting call may provide some insight. On December 23, two different ads for performers for "HP Palm Phones" were posted to the DirectCast site:

So they want "young, student, hipster, good style" and no "CORPORATE LOOKING PEOPLE." Well ok then, sounds like a decent enough target market to us. We have good hands, sure, but we're not "SOFISTICATED," so your humble PreCentral writers are out. Anybody out there interested?

Source: DirectCastThanks Matt!

Update: A loyal PreCentral reader signed up for the call and after doing so, noticed that the casting page added a bit more info on the shoot, including "HP PALM. the Broadway, the Manta, the Topaz."  Broadway is a phone we've been tracking for some time in relation to the Pixi 2, the Topaz is a codename Engadget pegged as the PalmPad, and the Manta, well, that's new-ish, but the Mantaray did appear earlier this year in webOS 2.0 source code. From new phone rumor famine to codename holiday feast. Here's your screenshot:

Thanks Anonymous, break a leg at the casting call!



They should get George Costanza. I hear he has excellent hands!

I wonder if they'd prefer a hipster-dufus!

So they didn't get traction with busy moms, so they want to try with super cool students?

Getting old, didn't make the sophisticated age limit.

This probably would have generated more buzz 2 weeks ago... smh...

Im thinking Palm is like the White Rabbit... ALWAYS running late!

do they tweens, teens, or yuppies?...

I can see who they are targeting. What about few of us who are a tad longer in the tooth. We can still be Hip, fun, spontenous, colorful people. I still wear Lucky's or are those out now LOL

Heck I even own my own Business

I'm in. Where do you sign up? :D

2 different phones I'm assuming? It better not be for the Pre2 or Pixi2, unless the pixi2 can compete in this current smartphone environment.

It sounds like they are wanting to replicate the Microsoft Kin ad:

Ads like this are actually targeted at teens because teens want to emulate people who are a little older. You will never get teens to buy something by targeting teens.

One note about hands, one of the more famous celebrities to do a smartphone commercial is Megan Fox. She actually has significantly short stubby thumbs - it's not her hand pictured in the commercial:

Here are her real hands:

Well I am out I am not paying $20 to apply! Their loss really my Great, young, sophisticated, non wall-street, hipster hands are not for sale!

Pay $20? It says that the pay rate is $1000 plus 20 percent. Nothing about an application fee. LOL

What beantastic meant was that, in order to click through to apply for the gig on the DirectCast Web site, one needs to have (and pay for) a DirectCast membership, which costs $20 to setup plus a monthly fee. {Jonathan}

I want in!

But I don't wanna pay for some site... :(

I just want to see some marketing for web os. Bring on the commercials.


I would assume that this -- -- is one of the phones they'll be advertising. Notice how it has a metal rim and front-facing camera!

Pretty sure if you actually order, you'll get the Pixi 1, but Sprint is clearly showing us the Pixi 2!

nah im pretty sure thats the regular pixi...there is no "metal rim" that is just an illusion in the pic and the "front-facing camera" u are referring to is either the proximity sensor or the light sensor...sorry for busting ur bubble but my old pixi has the same 2 sensors and same trim, tho its not metal

Really? I agree about the rim, it does look shiny in a lot of pictures (like here: But I've never seen those sensors before...

Yeah, you're right. Bubble busted.

We should all be VERY offended! That casting call reads like a request for the direct polar opposite of all of us here on PreCentral and the forums! Good hands? After thunb-typing on outdated hardware since June 2009, our thumbs are as red and swollen as a baboon's behind! Lots of style?! Have any of you watched ANY of the podcasts?! Dieter and the crew have lots of something, but it ain't style, my friends! Fun? Hip? Colorful? Not even, bro! We DO fit in the "not looking like Wall Street corporate-types" requirement, but that also means we wouldn't make it for the Wall Street HP Palm commercial casting calls either!!

Well, those of us here on PreCentral represent a small portion of the Palm user base, which itself represents a small portion of the smartphone user base. HP wants to diversify.

What about us old geeks?

I'd probably qualify, but I can only imagine the other 5,000 high school drop outs with nowhere to go trying out for this, so screw it, I'll stick to eating ramen noodles daily and student loans...

What? Pee-wee was busy?

Speak for yourself, but this writer is all sorts of sophisticated.



I guess we shall see what is mightier... The pen, sword or keyboard! lol

I can't tell you how thrilled I would be to see a Derek Kessler walk on in one of these ads! Time to pull some strings! :)

Yep, but yer not all sorts of "sofisticated": yer still o-w-t, out!

Both my daughters have Palm Pre’s and are both in college. They would both fit this profile. I on the other hand would not come close. I can hear it know, the famous long “Daaaaad”

I hope they use another Passion Pit song for the new commercials! Yay!

Union member--I'm out.

Sooo... I'm not familiar with commercial production timelines. But, assuming that these ads are for actors for commercials for one or more new phones, how long does it take from placing the ad for actors to publication of the commercial?

I'm sure it can vary. But what are some ballpark figures?

Ballpark you say? Well, you should see these ads...

wait for it...

wait for it...

in the coming months. :-)

I can't believe that I didn't see that coming!

Nice one.

That's the exact question. Hope very soon! But would have liked this in november then more likely january would be the big product, publicity push!

The commercial could be to followup on a product after release date too to keep interest up. I wouldn't judge these applications as a timetable to release.

Wasn't George Costanza a "hand model" for a while? I think HP should give him a call!

Dam I'm screwed, scars on both hands but hey they can CGI that out right :)

Screw looking for people with great hands, I wanna see something that the first Droid commercial aired on superbowl 2 years ago and Get Don Lafontane to announce it.

Is this California only?

Well HP has already shown that they can make a good commercial actually *cough* showing the product. Plus remember they are in with some of the biggest names in the industry, SJP, Snoop, Dre, D. Howard, etc. I'm not worried in that regard.

dec 28... wehere's my webos 2.0? who thinkgs well get it in the next 3 days?


come on HP! Age discrimination? What's wrong with "hip" old guys wanting your products? Should we just like Microsoft stuff?

Device codenames eh? Now this story is getting interesting. If you didn't believe that HP was going to release new phones, this should make a believer out of you. This is setting up for an exciting 2011 for webOS fans. They better get NICE hands on deck.

I concur with mister sanchez. This just about confirms 100% that multiple devices are cocked and ready to fire. I mean if they are allocating production money to shoot them in a commercial, we're pretty much there.

Commercials set the hype, hype brings the people, people bring the $$$, the $$$ brings more devs\apps, apps create the hype, and we start again.


I'm feeling age discrimination, and that's exactly what they'd expect an old fart like me say.

Now if they can come up with something catchier than "Faster, Better, and Tons of Fun" or "Celebrating Mobile Expressionists" they might be able to create some momentum!!!

Ah, man I have a 11 year old that would just love to be in this.

I'm excited. Hopefully we'll get more concrete information soon enough.

is looking VERY Jewish a problem?

LOL! Best post! I would say it shouldn't be a problem. You are a part of the original hipsters, LOL!

hmm.. new hardware near cameras huh.. =]

oooo. Hipsters.

grammar/spelling nazis suck, a lot. so it really sucks that i'm about to become one..

you make fun of "sofisticated" but then in the update i see "here's you're screenshot". *headdesk*

stones, glass houses, etc..

Agreed; spotted; fixed. {Jonathan}

The update mentions:
Run(usage): web videos and possible....

What about TV?

Oh, and I sure hope "Manta" is a real Pre replacement. I'm not at all excited about a pixi2.

The thing about Apple and W7 commercials is they feature everybody. Their target market is EVERYBODY! I despise ads that are demographically targeted. They are either racist, ageist, sexist, classist, or reflect some other form of exclusionary discrimination.

What they are no longer targeting moms or freaky looking women? 18-24 is targeting teens and the 25-35 is targeting everyone else. Because everyone think of themselves as being that age. Even if your older. This is good for a struggling product line. They need to appeal to the masses. Apple can target old people or moms, because they know young people are in their pocket.

What they aren't telling the applicants is that they have to shave their head for the role... ;-)

Who was it who had the horrible hands last time, 2 years ago, when they did the original demo? Jon?

The image posted says "HP Palm Phones" and lists the Topaz. I thought Topaz was supposed to be the tablet.

The real problem for HP is finding some one who is "African American/Asian/Caucasian/Hispanic", all in one!! I dont know if Tiger Woods has successfully rehabilitated his reputation in order to do these ads!

They can use my 9 year old daughter - she's all of those things except Hispanic, but we can always lie. After all , it is Hollywood!

Does anyone know how long it takes from casting call. to production. to TV release? If so, we can get a possible estimated release date!

as long as they don't advertise any more creepy pale white women I'm looking forward to see what palm/HP has in store :)

I just went out to dinner with my friend who works at palm and he was just telling me about "topaz". He didn't say anything about the specs but he said that it was a very thin slider.

Maybe "have good hands" means talented hands. Probably a copy of the McDonald's Café synchronized hand drumming couple commercial, but slide around the new phones instead of McCafés!