18 Vintage Computer Ads That Are So Bad It Hurts

The computer ads of decades past are great to look back on to see just how far technology has progressed today. It’s also worth a laugh to see how marketers of the past used babies, pools, and women to try to sell computers. We’ve selected 18 vintage computer ads that are so bad it hurts.

1.Baby On Board… To Learn

Bad Laptop Ad
Sure, let’s just hand a laptop to a baby. Yup, the little cutie will know what to do with it. Maybe this early learner could become the next Albert Einstein?

2.Grow & Groan

1960s Computer AdThis 1960s ad makes it quite clear that you’ll grow a giant body if you get the advertised job. Right, that’s why you want the job. Uh huh. Sure, it would be great to be ten times our current height but then again we’d just settle for everyone around us having a bit of common sense.

3.Shhhh, I Wanna Tell Ya Something

IBM Computer Ad
In this vintage computer ad, we would like to forewarn IBM of the security attacks to come on businesses around the world in the upcoming years. We like to help people.

4.Partner Of Your Dreams

Funny Retro Computer Ad
Here are a few extra lines to add to the quote in this bad advert: “One day later, I realized with huge disappointment that this dumb machine wouldn’t have a drink with me like my real partner would do.” Priceless.

5.Brainiac Back Then

Brain Vintage Computer Ad
It’s less than $5! Let’s celebrate! The retro ad from a 1967 Marvel comic book shows a unique tech product that we likely wouldn’t see today. Although we do have a friend that also is fun at parties and tells fortunes once he gets a few drinks in him.

6.That’s Some Storage You Got There

Vintage Ad for Computer Storage
To store or not to store, that is the question. And the answer is NOT to store. In 1977, when this ad went to print, who could afford 80 MB for the special price of under $12,000?!

7.I’m Too Sexy For This Computer

Retro Ad Sexy
Why did computer ads play up the sexy back in the 70s? That was certainly an *ahem* insightful *ahem* way to market the microcomputer.

8.Hit (The Keys) & Run

Funny Superhero Computer Ad
You’ll be like a friggin’ superhero with the MultiSpeed computer! The way the tie is flying, we hope we can catch up with this jet setter! It’s such a bad computer ad that it hurts (almost as much as a hit and run).

9.Ditch The Dog, Get A New ‘Puter

Bad Computer Advertising with Family
So much for a dog being man’s best friend. It looks like this retro TRS-80 Model 4 from Tandy was meant to be everyone’s best friend or at least once they put down those awesome software programs they were holding onto for dear life.

10.It’s A Big Moment

Fail Apple Ad

Ah yes, it’s so small that – No, wait, it’s not small at all. Not thin, either. We’ll wait another 20 years, it’s okay. No rush.

11.Awkwardly Mobile

Mobile Computer Ad Hurts So CornyWe don’t care what year this ad came out as there is no way it is mobile in any decade! Hello large and awkward design, nice to meet you.

12.My Briefcase Is Ringing

Briefcase Portability Ad is Bad
We like how the ad mentions “maximum user convenience.” It’s a small phone, y’all, that’s what the advertisers wanted you to think. The smartphones of today are less than a quarter of the size and include all of the features shown here (not that we make phone calls anymore).

13.For Your 2 Favorite Songs

Megabytes Bad Retro Advertisement
Imagine that, a 10 MB hard disk system that will hold both of your favorite songs on it. Wow, how can they possibly top that? Oh, right, the 26 MB system.

14.That’s A Nice Modem You’ve Got There

Old School Ad with Woman
How about a lovely blonde holding a computer and the COMPUTER being the one called sexy? Now that’s a unique computer marketing strategy.

15.Just A Small Office Addition Inn-deed

Computer Ad Bad EfficiencySeriously, look how big that computer is! Well, on the bright side, now the Inn is ready to take your reservation, just wait for the dial-up connection to start and we’ll go from there.

16.If You See This, Call 911

Bad Word Processor Ad

If we saw this model in a store now, we’d back slowly away. We do like the line “when you’re the star, we’re the star.” You’re shining brightly here, WordStar.

17.Color Coded

Old Radio Shack Ad

The 1980s brought us a color computer. I don’t think we can outdo this retro ad from Radio Shack. Wait, let us try…


Old Commodore Computer AdWhy yes, I would like to take my groovy Commodore to the poolside. Thank you for asking me.

My, we’ve come a long, long way baby in the computer age. The ads above are some of the ones that hurt the most. We hope you groaned right along with us as we put together this post. Now let’s all get back to our wearable technologies, shall we?