A very false narrative: Microsoft Surface vs Apple iPad, Mac

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 99
    thttht Posts: 3,243member
    appex said:
    Apple should make a Mac tablet.
    And make macOS as dumbed down as iOS? No thank you.
    I'd actually like Apple to give this a try:


    I'd go even more extreme. Put in a 15" 16:10 "iPad", as large as the footprint allows, onto there. 

    If can operate like the Touchbar, essentially an iPad as an input device to a Mac. The basic idea is the bottom screen is a big input device plus whatever iOS apps can run on it. It'll serve as a keyboard, trackpad, Pencil input. Basically just make the Touchbar iPad large. 

    When you you want to draw or take handwritten notes, use an Apple Pencil. The trackpad will be a software based one. The keyboard will be a software based one. You can have specialized keyboards for any language or app. Like a VIM specialized keyboard. You are not limited to ~100 keys. Put in 200 if needed. You can use a shape drawing keyboard if needed. You can rearrange the keys anyway you want. 

    This "Touchboard" can also have iOS apps run on it. Like Twitter. Or have an uber status app for your Mac there. 

    This idea comes as the cost of having 2x sized battery and probably a 5 lb laptop. But, it presents an interesting idea of making drawing input into a clamshell with less clumsiness then the 2-in-1 or swiveling screen laptop form factors I think. 
  • Reply 22 of 99
    eightzero said:
    jorgie said:
    I work for a fairly large university (5K staff, 30K students) and the Surface Pro 3/4 has been our default choice for mobile users for 3 years now. We have tried everything from Dell multiple other vendors, and nothing really competes yet.



    Just to clarify: you say this is your employer's default choice, and nothing really competes. I would read that as the supplier (employer) making the choice for the user, not that the user finds it meets their needs or desires. Perhaps it is the default choice based solely on price? Or some other criteria that is important to the purchaser, and not the user?
    I would go a step further and suggest that in the case of many, if not most, universities and large businesses, the reason why there is a continuation of the MS based PC hardware and software is the fact that the very people who direct and work in the IT departments:
    1. are MS die-hard fans / users
    2. need to justify their existence
    3. buy into the "low" cost hardware available

    Sure, there can be issues with software that doesn't have a Mac alternative, but given the fact that Apple addressed that years ago with Bootcamp making the MacBook Pro what used to be considered the best PC you could buy, suggests that's not a good excuse.  

    So I go back to my three points above as reasons why the PC hangs on.  The problem for Microsoft, is that consumers who tried an iPhone, or iPad, when they were really the only game worth considering for a good smartphone or tablet (for the price), unsurprisingly liked what Apple had, got hooked into the ecosystem and started to buy Apple MacBooks, MacBook Pro's and iMacs. 

    And once they've got Apple at home, many then pushed to use the same thing at work, resulting in many companies, including IBM, to realize that it's better to use an Apple product - even when you factor in the higher initial cost,  as they cost less to use over time.

    Every company I have worked for, going back to the days when there wasn't such a thing as a PC, now operate using a combination of PC's and Macs, where the PC users are now the exceptions, not the majority they once were.  I remember back in 2007, when the first iPhone came out, every business colleague I knew was using a Blackberry.  They all laughed at me (I'm a tech early adapter) when I would pull out my iPhone, saying how they could never switch, would never switch, from a physical keyboard to an on-screen keyboard.  I would ask them to pull up a website to look at something business related and they'd get this horrid rendering of a site, with almost nothing laid out correctly.  I'd pull out my iPhone to show them what it should look like, and this is when the Blackberry shell started to crack.  They'd see a website rendered just like what they'd see on their laptop and then they'd start asking what else the iPhone could do.

    At one company, a small retail chain run by a very creative owner, there was a mix of Macs and PC's, more Macs than PC's.  But when the owners sold to a private equity firm, and new upper management was hired, they came in and pushed to get everyone (outside of the graphic design team) on the same laptop, buying a ton of knockoff Thinkpad's (mostly Compaq / HP versions).  I went through 2 laptops in 4 months, both suffering from BSOD syndrome and if I remember correctly, the same issue effected 15 other people as well.  I told them I'd use my personal MacBook Pro instead of trying to get another replacement.

    I ended up leaving the company shortly after, but my wife still worked there so I would go back and visit occasionally and had to laugh seeing the CEO not only working on a MacBook Pro, but having ditched her Blackberry for an iPhone not even 18 months since coming on board.  In fact the CEO was proud to show me she was all "Mac" now.  They also went from having three IT people to just one, in part because some many people moved from PC to Mac.
    pscooter63magman1979studiomusicchiawatto_cobra
  • Reply 23 of 99
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 1,767member
    I use primarily macs for home and my business but I IT a small medical clinic and bought 6 surface pro3s for electronic medical records. They are nice - the docs fill out the forms with the styluses because it is 3x more efficient then trackpad - but they still have a track pad option. They can use primarily in desktop mode. They are very light and have all day battery life. I think they don't sell as well because they are a premium product and that excludes 80% of the PC market - I mean an i7 in 1.73 lbs form factor! The "new" macbook (which I have and love except for the keyboard and dongles) is 2 lbs for a crappy slow processor. Instead of criticizing Microsoft here - we should be asking the same or more of Apple. An Apple Surface Pro4 clone - iOS/Mac OS, touchpad key cover - full travel keys, iPad Pro pens and 1.5 lbs with magsafe and new and legacy usb and display ports and a OEM complete dock solution with ethernet and tons of ports would sell like absolute hotcakes.

    If you use PCs and haven't tried a Surface Pro4 - do so. Its an incredible piece of engineering and makes iPads redundant (and that may be why Apple won't knock them off).

    I just wish Apple would step up it's Mac game so we can have decent competitive (in HW and price!) products - I mean touchbar - what were they thinking other then - Apple design committee meeting: "well we got to keep appearing innovative and we can't copy so lets try a touch bar - yea that's the ticket". And those new laptop keyboards.. - I use them but just absolutely hate them - it's not growing on me after 2 years and counting...
    Yes Apple definately needs to add mouse/trackPad support to iPadPro.

    The surface business has really rebounded since the big write-down.   MS doesn't have to hold a mea culpa meeting about how they screwed up with the Surface Now.

    And it been just as long of a wait for the new large iPad Pro as for a Surface Pro 5.
    (MS did release the Surface Book Performance Base - and they didn't have to wait 4 years like the Mac Pro.)
  • Reply 24 of 99
    appex said:
    Apple should make a Mac tablet.
    There's the aftermarket modbook pro. I have no idea how good the user experience is.
    chia
  • Reply 25 of 99
    k2kw said:

    The surface business has really rebounded since the big write-down.   MS doesn't have to hold a mea culpa meeting about how they screwed up with the Surface Now.

    And it been just as long of a wait for the new large iPad Pro as for a Surface Pro 5.
    (MS did release the Surface Book Performance Base - and they didn't have to wait 4 years like the Mac Pro.)
    No it has not. The figures are right in front of you. 

    And for the March quarter it just released today, Surface dropped another 25% YoY to $831M. That's a full step back into 2013. 

    Apple introduced a $599 iPad Pro last summer. Microsoft chose not to introduce a tablet sized Surface prototype. That's due to costs and sustainability.  
    magman1979StrangeDayschiapscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 26 of 99

    tht said:
    appex said:
    Apple should make a Mac tablet.
    And make macOS as dumbed down as iOS? No thank you.
    I'd actually like Apple to give this a try:


    I'd go even more extreme. Put in a 15" 16:10 "iPad", as large as the footprint allows, onto there. 

    If can operate like the Touchbar, essentially an iPad as an input device to a Mac. The basic idea is the bottom screen is a big input device plus whatever iOS apps can run on it. It'll serve as a keyboard, trackpad, Pencil input. Basically just make the Touchbar iPad large. 

    When you you want to draw or take handwritten notes, use an Apple Pencil. The trackpad will be a software based one. The keyboard will be a software based one. You can have specialized keyboards for any language or app. Like a VIM specialized keyboard. You are not limited to ~100 keys. Put in 200 if needed. You can use a shape drawing keyboard if needed. You can rearrange the keys anyway you want. 

    This "Touchboard" can also have iOS apps run on it. Like Twitter. Or have an uber status app for your Mac there. 

    This idea comes as the cost of having 2x sized battery and probably a 5 lb laptop. But, it presents an interesting idea of making drawing input into a clamshell with less clumsiness then the 2-in-1 or swiveling screen laptop form factors I think. 
    That's an interesting rendering. However, if you note that the TouchBar adds almost ~$300 to the MBP, what cost impact would a 10x larger OLED panel for the entire keyboard have? In addition to a similarly sized touch screen that supports the high accuracy and tilt detection of Apple Pencil? Users with a need for drawing should be able to use an iPad Pro and a Mac in tandem. That would make more sense than a copy-paste hybrid that would force everyone to buy a product that has the costs of both while lacking the advantages of either. A heavy, thick iPad Pro and a MBP with two large displays burning battery all the time, starting around $4,000.
    caliMikeymikebrucemcchiatobianpscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 27 of 99
    davidcree said:
    I love it when DED says "here's why" thanks Dan, enjoyed your journalism for many, many years.
    Thanks for the comments!

    ---

    Addressing the other comments about personal preference for Surface: the article notes that Microsoft has sold about 16M Surface units since it got started in 2012. So clearly there are people who bough some. The article addresses the sustainability of a low volume product that costs a lot to develop and sells against commodity products that run the same software, and the dishonesty of media narratives suggesting that Mac creatives and/or iPad users are flocking to buy Surface, which is simply not true. 
    calipscooter63magman1979brucemcchiawatto_cobra
  • Reply 28 of 99
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Microsoft announced that Surface sales plunged %26.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/microsoft-blames-slow-surface-sales-205312131.html

    so there goes that. 
    pscooter63magman1979brucemcchiawatto_cobra
  • Reply 29 of 99
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 4,155member
    cali said:
    Microsoft announced that Surface sales plunged %26.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/microsoft-blames-slow-surface-sales-205312131.html

    so there goes that. 
    The 26% is revenue, not sales. Microsoft doesn't provide sales for the Surface product line. They said it was due in part to OEMs taking share. Plus I think their hardware is due for a refresh so probably people waiting to purchase. Let's see how Mac sales are when Apple reports.
    brucemc
  • Reply 30 of 99
    anomeanome Posts: 1,294member

    Microsoft is not a computer hardware company

    This bears repeating. Apple is a computer hardware company. I know, they have tried to rebrand in CE, but that's still hardware. Everything else - their software, services, etc - exists to add value to their hardware.

    Microsoft is a software company. Everything else - mostly their services, but now also their hardware - exists to add value to their software. This doesn't seem to be as viable a strategy as Apple's. Especially as they built their market position on the backs of other hardware manufacturers that sell hardware to run MS's software.

    edited April 2017 StrangeDayschiapscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 31 of 99
    anomeanome Posts: 1,294member

    tht said:
    appex said:
    Apple should make a Mac tablet.
    And make macOS as dumbed down as iOS? No thank you.
    I'd actually like Apple to give this a try:


    I'd go even more extreme. Put in a 15" 16:10 "iPad", as large as the footprint allows, onto there. 

    If can operate like the Touchbar, essentially an iPad as an input device to a Mac. The basic idea is the bottom screen is a big input device plus whatever iOS apps can run on it. It'll serve as a keyboard, trackpad, Pencil input. Basically just make the Touchbar iPad large. 

    When you you want to draw or take handwritten notes, use an Apple Pencil. The trackpad will be a software based one. The keyboard will be a software based one. You can have specialized keyboards for any language or app. Like a VIM specialized keyboard. You are not limited to ~100 keys. Put in 200 if needed. You can use a shape drawing keyboard if needed. You can rearrange the keys anyway you want. 

    This "Touchboard" can also have iOS apps run on it. Like Twitter. Or have an uber status app for your Mac there. 

    This idea comes as the cost of having 2x sized battery and probably a 5 lb laptop. But, it presents an interesting idea of making drawing input into a clamshell with less clumsiness then the 2-in-1 or swiveling screen laptop form factors I think. 
    That's an interesting rendering. However, if you note that the TouchBar adds almost ~$300 to the MBP, what cost impact would a 10x larger OLED panel for the entire keyboard have? In addition to a similarly sized touch screen that supports the high accuracy and tilt detection of Apple Pencil? Users with a need for drawing should be able to use an iPad Pro and a Mac in tandem. That would make more sense than a copy-paste hybrid that would force everyone to buy a product that has the costs of both while lacking the advantages of either. A heavy, thick iPad Pro and a MBP with two large displays burning battery all the time, starting around $4,000.
    Also worth noting, there are people who positively hate the current MBP keyboard because of reduced travel. A glass keyboard is only going to make things worse. Unless they get full haptic feedback working - which I still believe they are trying to sort out - it's going get a lot of negative press on that feature alone. Even with it, I expect a lot of people will complain.
    brucemcchia
  • Reply 32 of 99
    buckalecbuckalec Posts: 192member
    jorgie said:
    I work for a fairly large university (5K staff, 30K students) and the Surface Pro 3/4 has been our default choice for mobile users for 3 years now. We have tried everything from Dell multiple other vendors, and nothing really competes yet.



    The Ipad was the other 1/4? Keyboard, price, giveaway... Any data to support the statement
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 33 of 99
    cali said:
    Microsoft announced that Surface sales plunged %26.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/microsoft-blames-slow-surface-sales-205312131.html

    so there goes that. 
    The 26% is revenue, not sales. Microsoft doesn't provide sales for the Surface product line. They said it was due in part to OEMs taking share. Plus I think their hardware is due for a refresh so probably people waiting to purchase. Let's see how Mac sales are when Apple reports.
    "Revenue not sales"  (laughing emoji)

    Where do you get your facts? Microsoft's 10K only says:

    "Surface revenue decreased $285 million or 26%, primarily due to a reduction in volumes sold."

    A bullshit story by Business Insider said it was good news that Microsoft was selling fewer Surface units because the whole point of Surface was to help hardware makers understand how to make with they were already making, just like Nexis and Google! 

    Are those the alternative facts you prefer to the truth?

    StrangeDaysbrucemcmrboba1chiapscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 34 of 99
    nhtnht Posts: 4,494member
    As I said before I like my Surface Book.  Not as much as my MBP perhaps but I do wish Apple made one that ran MacOS.  I can get work done on a surface as a dev. I can't on an iPad. 
  • Reply 35 of 99
    GenkaiGenkai Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    Some good comparisons in here but the overwhelming tone of apple fanboy hating on microsoft is very strong. The unnecessary negativity makes this article less than enjoyable.
  • Reply 36 of 99
    tmaytmay Posts: 3,845member
    cali said:
    Microsoft announced that Surface sales plunged %26.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/microsoft-blames-slow-surface-sales-205312131.html

    so there goes that. 
    The 26% is revenue, not sales. Microsoft doesn't provide sales for the Surface product line. They said it was due in part to OEMs taking share. Plus I think their hardware is due for a refresh so probably people waiting to purchase. Let's see how Mac sales are when Apple reports.
    "Revenue not sales"  (laughing emoji)

    Where do you get your facts? Microsoft's 10K only says:

    "Surface revenue decreased $285 million or 26%, primarily due to a reduction in volumes sold."

    A bullshit story by Business Insider said it was good news that Microsoft was selling fewer Surface units because the whole point of Surface was to help hardware makers understand how to make with they were already making, just like Nexis and Google! 

    Are those the alternative facts you prefer to the truth?

    I'll double down on previous statements of mine that Apple generates more revenue from AirPods that MS does from Surface.

    Obvious.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 37 of 99
    thttht Posts: 3,243member

    tht said:
    appex said:
    Apple should make a Mac tablet.
    And make macOS as dumbed down as iOS? No thank you.
    I'd actually like Apple to give this a try:


    I'd go even more extreme. Put in a 15" 16:10 "iPad", as large as the footprint allows, onto there. 

    If can operate like the Touchbar, essentially an iPad as an input device to a Mac. The basic idea is the bottom screen is a big input device plus whatever iOS apps can run on it. It'll serve as a keyboard, trackpad, Pencil input. Basically just make the Touchbar iPad large. 

    When you you want to draw or take handwritten notes, use an Apple Pencil. The trackpad will be a software based one. The keyboard will be a software based one. You can have specialized keyboards for any language or app. Like a VIM specialized keyboard. You are not limited to ~100 keys. Put in 200 if needed. You can use a shape drawing keyboard if needed. You can rearrange the keys anyway you want. 

    This "Touchboard" can also have iOS apps run on it. Like Twitter. Or have an uber status app for your Mac there. 

    This idea comes as the cost of having 2x sized battery and probably a 5 lb laptop. But, it presents an interesting idea of making drawing input into a clamshell with less clumsiness then the 2-in-1 or swiveling screen laptop form factors I think. 
    That's an interesting rendering. However, if you note that the TouchBar adds almost ~$300 to the MBP, what cost impact would a 10x larger OLED panel for the entire keyboard have? In addition to a similarly sized touch screen that supports the high accuracy and tilt detection of Apple Pencil? Users with a need for drawing should be able to use an iPad Pro and a Mac in tandem. That would make more sense than a copy-paste hybrid that would force everyone to buy a product that has the costs of both while lacking the advantages of either. A heavy, thick iPad Pro and a MBP with two large displays burning battery all the time, starting around $4,000.

    It would be a niche product on top of the mainstream laptop lineup. I don't think people would have a hard time with the price as long as the drawing input is class leading, keyboard input is acceptable and iOS app integration is good. 

    If you do the straight addition of the bottom SKUs of the iPad Pro 12.9 onto a 2015 MBP15, the end result is:

    $2000 + $800 = $2800
    0.71" + 0.27" = 0.98"
    4.5 lb + 1.6 lb = 6.1 lb
    100 WHr + 38 WHr = 138 WHr battery

    This is the older MBP15. The new MBP15 TB shaved 0.10" of thickness, went down to a 77 WHr battery and lost 0.5 lb.

    Integrating an iPad onto a MBP means these combined numbers will get better, and maybe it gets down to 0.75" thick, 5 lb, and a 100 WHr battery. Something the size of my 2015 MBP15. 

    It'll cost $3000 or more no doubt. But if the flexibility of input methods are realized, that cost can be driven down with time, and models starting at say $1500 could be introduced, like a 12" model. 

    I really think Apple didn't go far enough with the Touchbar. They should have went all the way with it. 

    People love their mechanical keyboards yes. But if you can have 200 buttons visible in a virtual keyboard, perhaps productivity can be enhanced, escpecially since you can use words instead of some single letter or iconography. People who love number pads can have one. The arrow key arrangement could be anyway you want. 

    Then, since it is a touch surface, custom control interfaces could be designed. Like for games. And obviously, something like this could be better as a note taking device, both in classrooms and at home, and drawing pad. 

  • Reply 38 of 99
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 1,767member
    k2kw said:

    The surface business has really rebounded since the big write-down.   MS doesn't have to hold a mea culpa meeting about how they screwed up with the Surface Now.

    And it been just as long of a wait for the new large iPad Pro as for a Surface Pro 5.
    (MS did release the Surface Book Performance Base - and they didn't have to wait 4 years like the Mac Pro.)
    No it has not. The figures are right in front of you. 

    And for the March quarter it just released today, Surface dropped another 25% YoY to $831M. That's a full step back into 2013. 

    Apple introduced a $599 iPad Pro last summer. Microsoft chose not to introduce a tablet sized Surface prototype. That's due to costs and sustainability.  
    800 million will be fine till they shortly release the Kaby Lake Sp 5.

    That $599 iPP is a piddling 9.7 screen.  

    I will be ingested in either iPP when they addmouse.track pad support.  TouchBar is overpriced gimmick-that's  why Apple sold so many 2015 MBP 2017 Q1
  • Reply 39 of 99


    It would be a niche product on top of the mainstream laptop lineup. I don't think people would have a hard time with the price as long as the drawing input is class leading, keyboard input is acceptable and iOS app integration is good. 

    If you do the straight addition of the bottom SKUs of the iPad Pro 12.9 onto a 2015 MBP15, the end result is:

    $2000 + $800 = $2800
    0.71" + 0.27" = 0.98"
    4.5 lb + 1.6 lb = 6.1 lb
    100 WHr + 38 WHr = 138 WHr battery

    This is the older MBP15. The new MBP15 TB shaved 0.10" of thickness, went down to a 77 WHr battery and lost 0.5 lb.

    Integrating an iPad onto a MBP means these combined numbers will get better, and maybe it gets down to 0.75" thick, 5 lb, and a 100 WHr battery. Something the size of my 2015 MBP15. 

    It'll cost $3000 or more no doubt. But if the flexibility of input methods are realized, that cost can be driven down with time, and models starting at say $1500 could be introduced, like a 12" model. 

    I really think Apple didn't go far enough with the Touchbar. They should have went all the way with it. 

    People love their mechanical keyboards yes. But if you can have 200 buttons visible in a virtual keyboard, perhaps productivity can be enhanced, escpecially since you can use words instead of some single letter or iconography. People who love number pads can have one. The arrow key arrangement could be anyway you want. 

    Then, since it is a touch surface, custom control interfaces could be designed. Like for games. And obviously, something like this could be better as a note taking device, both in classrooms and at home, and drawing pad. 

    One of the factors built into a price is the expected volume it will be sold in. So Apple could design a really nice $4000 laptop but if it could only be sold in tiny quantities it would make no money. 

    That's one of the problems with Surface. At its current price it would be very profitable if it sold in the tens of millions instead of 1 million per quarter. At the same time, one reason why it doesn't sell in high quantities is because it competes against very cheap Windows PC alternatives, many of which are much less desirable but also far less expensive. That matters. 

    ---

    The people who draw up renderings of fantasy hardware often don't think about price or the volume it could to sell at given how much it would cost. 

    Apples hardware business in the late 80s involved selling high end computers that were ~ $10,000+.  It is vastly more profitable today selling mostly $700 iPhones in massive quantities.
    edited April 2017 watto_cobra
  • Reply 40 of 99
    k2kw said:
    k2kw said:

    The surface business has really rebounded since the big write-down.   MS doesn't have to hold a mea culpa meeting about how they screwed up with the Surface Now.

    And it been just as long of a wait for the new large iPad Pro as for a Surface Pro 5.
    (MS did release the Surface Book Performance Base - and they didn't have to wait 4 years like the Mac Pro.)
    No it has not. The figures are right in front of you. 

    And for the March quarter it just released today, Surface dropped another 25% YoY to $831M. That's a full step back into 2013. 

    Apple introduced a $599 iPad Pro last summer. Microsoft chose not to introduce a tablet sized Surface prototype. That's due to costs and sustainability.  
    800 million will be fine till they shortly release the Kaby Lake Sp 5.

    That $599 iPP is a piddling 9.7 screen.  

    I will be ingested in either iPP when they addmouse.track pad support.  TouchBar is overpriced gimmick-that's  why Apple sold so many 2015 MBP 2017 Q1

    Operating a product segment with embarrassing revenues for 5 years is not "fine." Surface average quarterly revenue has been $812M for 4 years. 

    There is no reason a slightly faster chip will turn things around dramatically. Every other PC will have it too. 

    The $599 iPad Pro is smaller. That's the most popular size of IPad Apple sells, and Apple has long sold more iPads in a quarter than Microsoft has ever sold Surface units. Apple knows how to sell hardware. 

    Microsoft developed a smaller Surface but didn't bring it to market because they couldn't afford to. 

    iOS doesn't have mouse pointer support on purpose, as you know. 

    What evidence do you have that Apple's record Mac sales at higher ASPs in Q1 were somehow discounted 2015 refurbs, apart from being necessary to claim that TouchBar didn't sell MBPs? Sounds like alt facts. 
    brucemcchiapscooter63badmonkwatto_cobra
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