Microsoft's iPad-bashing Windows 8 ads: what about the Surface Pro?

Microsoft's iPad-bashing Windows 8 ads: what about the Surface Pro?Samsung has been going after Apple in its ads for a while now, and now Microsoft is following suit with its latest Windows 8 adverts.

A couple of new spots have surfaced this week showing a ballsy Microsoft taking direct aim at the market-dominating iPad tablet and its supposed lack of a serious edge.

The first ad focuses on everyone's favourite voice assistant Siri and the iPad's absence of Office support, while in the second it's the iPad's hardware specifications and value for money that come under fire. Plus the lack of Office thing again.

It's a brave move for Microsoft to target what has been a massively successful product, but do its shots hit the mark?

The ads are certainly entertaining, and if you're of the opinion that features like Siri are largely just pointless fluff (and I'm one of them), some of the points should ring true.

But there are some oddities too. The second ad, for instance, uses the Asus VivoTab RT as its Windows 8 standard bearer for the purposes of the comparisons, with the ad pointing out its thinner and lighter chassis, direct microSD card slot and cheaper overall price than the iPad.

But why choose the VivoTab RT when Microsoft actually makes a Windows 8 tablet itself – the Microsoft Surface Pro?

The obvious answer is because the Surface Pro is thicker, heavier and more expensive than the iPad, that's why.

Now let me say this clearly: this isn't an attack on the Surface, or a defence of the iPad. But surely if Microsoft itself is going to poke holes in the opposition, it should either ensure its own product can stand up to the specific comparisons being made, or choose different things to compare in the first place.

The average punter seeing the ads won't necessarily know the Surface Pro's spec offhand, but most will surely know it exists in the first place and may well end up wondering why, after going to all the trouble to release an own-brand tablet, doesn't Microsoft want to talk about it all of a sudden?

Read more about: Windows 8Apple iPad 4Microsoft Surface Pro

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10 comments

barrybarryk  May. 24, 2013 at 12:39

The surface pro is not the same sort of device as an iPad, it's just the same shape.

Junkmailer  May. 24, 2013 at 13:18

the surface RT cannot do Access, I assume the same is true for the shown Asus pad with it being an RT version, MS should look at its own devices failures to run some the whole office suite, now what have they got to say to them banana's, eh, EH!

anujbeinghuman  May. 24, 2013 at 13:18

I totally understand your contention in this article but iPad is not a MacAir or MacBook pro.. Whereas surface pro is certainly a PC in tablet form.

socialjeebus  May. 24, 2013 at 13:32

The surface pro is not the same sort of device as an iPad, it's just the same shape.

This.

The Surface Pro is essentially a full-featured PC whereas the iPad is an oversized iPod Touch (not that that's necessarily a bad thing though).

RandUser  May. 24, 2013 at 13:55

I would like to point out that some of the information in this article is incorrect. The tablet used in the referenced ad is the VivoTab Smart, NOT the VivoTab RT. This can be clearly seen next to the price at the end of the ad. This is an important factor because, unlike the VivoTab RT, the smart runs Windows 8 on an Intel Atom processor. This means it is able to run all programs configured for windows, and not just apps like the iPad or RT. Also, the reason that MS does not use the Surface Pro is because it would be too complicated to show all the differences between the two. By the time you've included the i5 processor, increased RAM, stylus capabilities, keyboard add-ons, and extra ports, the screen would be too cluttered to accurately target the kind of simple consumer that the iPad has had so much success with. Either way, the larger problem here is that this article references the wrong device.

TJ Skywasher  May. 24, 2013 at 14:02

I don't get the Surface Pro as a product at all, surely you'd be better off with a Windows 8 laptop of some description. If you've got to lug a heavy tablet round with you, plus a keyboard and anything else you want to plug into it then a laptop would make more sense and be cheaper. I don't think a lot of manufacturers grasp the concept of what a tablet is.

RandUser  May. 24, 2013 at 14:15

I don't get the Surface Pro as a product at all, surely you'd be better off with a Windows 8 laptop of some description. If you've got to lug a heavy tablet round with you, plus a keyboard and anything else you want to plug into it then a laptop would make more sense and be cheaper. I don't think a lot of manufacturers grasp the concept of what a tablet is.

I'd rather roll with a 2lb Surface than a 4-6lb computer. Plus, you can't draw or write on a laptop the way you can with the Pro's digitizer pen. I agree that a laptop is better if all you're going to be doing is typing, but if the touch interface, light weight, or compact size is a valuable factor then there's no better machine.

toraji  May. 24, 2013 at 17:02

I think the ad is AWESOME. Finally Microsoft shows some balls. I am also happy to see that many people (not only here) are sort of defending this ad campaign from Microsoft between the MUCH more apple defenders in the same comments. It is actually really funny to see all the non sense they come up with. :o))))

The whole point from this ad campaign is to cause a ripple in the huge ocean out there and it clearly works. There is one thing I miss in all the comments from reviewers and commentators though. I think Microsoft should be praised for the fact that they show a tablet from one of the OEM's that where not happy wit Microsoft for bringing their own tablets pc's to the market.

I own the pro and I love it, where I go he goes and almost everybody that sees it is impressed with this little beast

I wish all of you a great weekend :)
regards
t

socialjeebus  Jun. 5, 2013 at 03:44

I don't get the Surface Pro as a product at all, surely you'd be better off with a Windows 8 laptop of some description. If you've got to lug a heavy tablet round with you, plus a keyboard and anything else you want to plug into it then a laptop would make more sense and be cheaper. I don't think a lot of manufacturers grasp the concept of what a tablet is.

Tbh, my boss is pretty much beating himself off over getting his MS Surface Pro. My company alone will be buying 100+.

anujbeinghuman  Jun. 5, 2013 at 10:30


Tbh, my boss is pretty much beating himself off over getting his MS Surface Pro. My company alone will be buying 100+.


I won't mind taking off of your hand. Let me know ;)

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