Common, the rapper and hip hop star, takes to a stage to make a speech about the power of technology in a new spot for Microsoft.
Created by Microsoft creative agency partner Blk-Ops, the campaign focuses on the ways in which new opportunities emerge as technology evolves, encouraging viewers to use Microsoft's technology to make the world a better place. The spot is intercut with footage of people doing incredible things with Microsoft technologies like HoloLens and AI, but Common's message is that "technology...is only a tool." It ends with a call to action as Common asks… "What will you do?"
While Common has voiced Microsoft ads before, including its 2015 Super Bowl campaign, it's the first time he's actually appeared in a spot for the brand. It's timely, as he's nominated for an Oscar this year for his song "Stand Up for Something," which appeared in the film "Marshall." He is also set to perform the song with Andra Day during the awards show this weekend.
The campaign will progress with stories from innovators leveraging AI technology. Future stories will feature Ros Harvey from The Yield, an Australian agricultural tech company that is using AI to provide farmers with predictive analysis to help them better manage their farms; and Yves Ubelmann of Iconem, a French company using AI technology to create detailed 3D renders of iconic buildings and monuments around the world that are at risk of being lost forever.