Regarding the "ad campaign." It was one short film, posted pretty much exclusively on Elektron's website, Vimeo channel, and Facebook page. It's not like this thing was shown on TV or in movie theater's during trailers. The only people that really saw it were people already familiar with the company and the product. So I'm not sure there's that many people out there who want one because it looks cool due to advertisements and its image. Elektron makes some nicely designed and stylish gear, but is that really a negative thing? They're well crafted instruments that are, for all their inner complexities, fairly easy to navigate and use. I've never heard an owner of an Elektron unit express concern that they paid too much money for purely cosmetic reasons. They're just rectangular metal boxes with buttons and knobs. Also, the price of the Octatrack was pretty much known many, many months before it was officially announced with the film, so to think it had any effect on the cost of the unit is kind of ridiculous.
As far as the Octatrack itself is concerned, I just got mine last night so I haven't even had the time to really sit down with it for very long, but so far I can assure everyone that it's a very nice piece, and lives up to the Elektron lineage, and well... it will get better with time once they actually get it past the Beta stage (It's currently at OS 0.99).
Being realistic, I don't think there's really any single piece of gear (hardware or software) that you can really attribute doing something that is 100% exclusive to THAT piece. There's always the rare exception, but in this case, when all is said and done, it's still just a sampler / sequencer. It's not like it's an entirely groundbreaking concept. Although anyone familiar with the Elektron interface and standard features and functionality (ie; parameter locks!) knows that alone is enough to consider it. The ease of things like setting the crossfader is pretty quick and painless; you hold down one button, tweak however many parameters you want to the values on one end, and then do the same on the other end. Want to reverse the playback of two tracks while simultaneously opening the filter on another track and cranking the pitch and delay repeat on another two tracks? Takes about 15 seconds to set that up.
Another nice touch that I realized, while nothing mind-blowing, is that when you slice, trim, and otherwise mangle a sample, well... it doesn't actually alter the original file in any way. It's all just saved as parameter settings, leaving the original file intact. So not only do you not have to worry about accidentally destroying your file, it never has to create a "new" file of the trimmed / sliced / warped sample. While I have no idea if this is a feature unique to the OT, but the relative safety of non-destructive audio editing as well as the reduction of an increasing number of audio files is a good bonus in my opinion.
Overall it's a worthy sampler. It certainly has a lot going for it; up to four external audio sources which can be sampled in real time, an absolutely insane amount of pattern storage (256 patterns per "Project" and an unlimited number of projects), great editing and timing options, and the LFO designer is a fairly unique feature, especially for hardware.
Speaking of LFO's, each track has 3 freely assignable LFO's, built in and ready to use right out of the box. It's at least got that going for it when comparing it to Ableton Live.
Seriously though, it's a fine machine. Sure, there hasn't been a lot of "great" demo's of it so far, but electronic music can be highly subjective. Especially when sampling becomes involved. It's not like a synth where one can be blown away instantly by just the mere raw sound of it, although the quality of playback and the filters and effects are all ace. It's a powerful sampler that can probably rival a lot of software samples in terms of features, all housed in a pretty intuitive hardware interface. Now that it's making its way into the hands of the users I'd expect to be seeing some good stuff in the weeks to come. And if that fails, well, I'm sure the next Autechre album or two will show it off in fine form!