Apple has joined with some of its allies and rivals over a common cause: bringing the 50th Super Bowl football game to the new Santa Clara Stadium in 2016
. Apple, Google, Gap, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Seagate, Virgin America and Yahoo have all pledged $2 million to help offset the public costs of the event, such as security and youth groups, to alleviate the burden on taxpayers. By coincidence, 2016 is also the year Apple expects to complete its new, $5 billion headquarters, known as "Campus 2."
Apple's involvement in the civic fundraising effort, which has thus far raised some $25 million over its initial $5 million goal, does not necessarily portend the presence of a commercial from the iPhone maker -- still remembered for its ground-breaking ad from the 1984 Super Bowl that heralded the Mac. Less well-remembered was a poor follow-up commercial called "Lemmings"
that aired during the 1985 Super Bowl, which was seen as insulting to potential business customers.
Apple has only advertised during the Super Bowl on four occasions: the 1984 and 1985, the well-received "Hal"
commercial of 1999, and a joint iTunes/Pepsi promotion called "I Fought the Law"
in 2004. Earlier this year it was rumored that Apple would again advertise during the 2014 Super Bowl to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the "1984" commercial and the Mac, but this didn't happen. Instead the ad "1.24.84" was posted to the company's website
and, later, video services like YouTube.
"While much of the $30 million raised would fund police overtime, free public events and expanded transportation options, 25 percent of the money, or nearly $8 million, would be donated to local youth groups and other charities," the San Jose Mercury News
reported. "NFL owners on May 21 will choose between the 49ers' new Levi's Stadium and the Miami Dolphins' Sun Life Stadium to host the 2016 game. The Bay Area is the front runner after south Florida in recent weeks failed to win approval from lawmakers for a $350 million renovation to its 26-year-old stadium. South Florida has reportedly raised $21 million for its Super Bowl bid."
The Super Bowl, which normally uses Roman numerals to designate the anniversary even number, is taking a one-year break from the practice for the 50th Super Bowl, presumably because the public at large would be confused by a single letter "L" to designate 50. Apple has skillfully avoided something of the same problem with its latest version of OS X: if it had used Roman numerals to designate the forthcoming Yosemite (version 10.10), the numbering might be written as OS XXX.