Frank Shaw Slams Tech Press, Asks Them To Take Their Heads Out of Apple’s Reality Distortion Field

Our very own Pradeep penned an excellent post yesterday: Reality Distortion Field: How Apple Assaulted Microsoft At Its Media Event

It’s a great look at how Apple distorts the truth and blatantly lies at their press event.  This generally would not be a problem if you have unbiased and responsible press core.  But sadly this is of course not the case, and the majority of tech press has a love for Apple that is second only to their own ego.

Apple’s announced yesterday that the next update to their OS, Maverick would be free.  You might think this is the first time a major technology has ever done this, if you ignore Android and Windows 8.1.  Apple also announced that the next iteration to the iWorks suite would be free to with the purchase of new Apple hardware.  Reading the mainstream tech press you may think this is the first time a major technology company has made some software free.

This particulary incensed Microsoft’s Frank Shaw who penned a nice blog post entitled “Apples and Oranges.” He writes:

Seems like the RDF (Reality Distortion Field) typically generated by an Apple event has extended beyond Cupertino.

So let me try to clear some things up.

Note: If you are the TL;DR type, let me cut to the chase. Surface and Surface 2 both include Office, the world’s most popular, most powerful productivity software for free and are priced below both the iPad 2 and iPad Air respectively. Making Apple’s decision to build the price of their less popular and less powerful iWork into their tablets not a very big (or very good) deal.

Since we launched the Surface line of tablets last year, one of the themes we’ve consistently used to talk about them is that they are a terrific blend of productivity and entertainment in one lightweight, affordable package. In fact, we’re confident that they offer the best combination of those capabilities available on the market today.

That’s not an accident, it’s exactly what we set out to design. We saw too many people carrying two devices around (one for work and one for play) and dealing with the excess cost, weight and complexity that “dual carrying” entails. We believed that there was another, better way: A tablet built to offer great touch-based entertainment activities combined with a productivity powerhouse that helps people crank through the stuff they have to get done before they watch zombies or flick birds.

That’s what Surface is. A single, simple, affordable device that helps you both lean in and kick back. Let’s be clear – helping folks kill time on a tablet is relatively easy. Give them books, music, videos and games, and they’ll figure out the rest. Pretty much all tablets do that.

But helping people be productive on a tablet is a little trickier. It takes an understanding of how people actually work, how they get things done, and how to best support the way they do things already.

The good news is that Microsoft understands how people work better than anyone else on the planet. We created the personal computing revolution by giving people around the world a low-cost, powerful, easy-to-use device that helped them accomplish an unbelievable array of tasks. And together, Windows and Office ended up reaching every corner of the globe and powering every academic institution, industry and profession. Of course both Windows and Office are evolving all the time – to reflect the way people work today – more social, more mobile and connected through the cloud.

We literally wrote the book on getting things done. And that’s how we knew that Surface needed to include three things to help people do their best work:

1. The gold standard in productivity software – Office.
2. Faster and more precise input methods like keyboard/trackpad.
3. The ability to use apps and documents side by side, allowing the comparisons, analysis and synthesis that happens frequently during content creation.

That’s what we delivered. And it’s why the Surface is the most productive tablet you can buy today. We also knew that it would make our competitors take notice. That as consumers got a taste of devices that could really help them get things done, they would see alternatives as being more limited.

And so it’s not surprising that we see other folks now talking about how much “work” you can get done on their devices. Adding watered down productivity apps. Bolting on aftermarket input devices. All in an effort to convince people that their entertainment devices are really work machines.

In that spirit, Apple announced yesterday that they were dropping their fees on their “iWork” suite of apps. Now, since iWork has never gotten much traction, and was already priced like an afterthought, it’s hardly that surprising or significant a move. And it doesn’t change the fact that it’s much harder to get work done on a device that lacks precision input and a desktop for true side-by-side multitasking.

But you wouldn’t know that from reading some of the coverage I’ve read today. Perhaps attendees at Apple’s event were required to work on iOS devices that don’t allow them to have two windows open for side-by-side comparisons, so let me help them out by highlighting the following facts:

• The Surface and Surface 2 are less expensive than the iPad 2 and iPad Air respectively, and yet offer more storage, both onboard and in the cloud.
• … come with full versions of Office 2013, including Outlook, not non-standard, non-cross-platform, imitation apps that can’t share docs with the rest of the world.
• … offer additional native productivity enhancing capabilities like kickstands, USB ports, SD card slots and multiple keyboard options.
• … include interfaces for opening multiple windows, either side by side or layered to fit the way most people actually work.

So, when I see Apple drop the price of their struggling, lightweight productivity apps, I don’t see a shot across our bow, I see an attempt to play catch up.

I think they, like others, are waking up to the fact that we’ve built a better solution for people everywhere, who are getting things done from anywhere, and who don’t have hard lines between their personal and professional lives. People who want a single, simple, affordable device with the power and flexibility to enhance and support their whole day. :)

 Source: Frank Shaw


  • ILoveTablets

    +1 to everything that Frank Shaw said. The cult-like Apple following and claim that these devices are “better” without any quantified or qualifying information is akin to Scientology.
    For the record, we have all three platforms of tablets in our house (Surface Pro & Surface RT, Android (Kindle Fire), and iPad (gen 3)), and the Windows 8-based devices are by far the most flexible, powerful, and useful. Even my kids default to them for the XBox Live games.

    Distortion Field is an apt term for Apple’s constant marketing spin.

    • techieg

      Although its obnoxious but its the name of the game everywhere you turn even in government politics that’s supposed to be an industry watchdog on behalf of consumers at least.

  • Bugbog

    You tell ’em Frank!

    • Guest

      Is MSFT going to offer the partnering OEMs free office for their products? If not why should they support MSFT and not just go chrome? This could be the beginning of the end to MSFT as we know it.

      • blakjedi

        office is free on all rt devices regardless of manufacturer. this includes cellphones.

        • Guest

          LOL Every other OEM has given up on RT!

      • HoppITUp

        Typical apple fanboy, posts crap and doesn’t know ass frome a hole in the ground. Office is better than “idon’tworks”

      • cbsmart

        Office is also free on all sub 8″ Windows 8 tablets. (not just RT)

        • kalval

          up to 10″ I believe

      • Sugadevan

        Come with your name idiot, you guys are really afraid of MS now, MS just started doing everything right. from Tim cook to the last crapple fanboy, everybody watching what MS is doing than what apple is doing. why you guys taking tooo much time & care on MS products if you don’t like them? this clearly tells something!!

  • nohone

    You can tell a site is getting better and growing by the number of Apple fanboys who show up to attack, protect the honor and fight for the glory of Apple. This site is getting more and more of them, and I expect this article to show just how many there are lurking around here.

    But for the article, it shows what I wrote here on MS-N yesterday. When the media is there cheering and applauding Apple upgrading a processor, they have lost all objectivity.

    • Guest

      Pot meet Kettle

      • Johan Spånberg

        Why would the Apple-kettle flock around Windows Phone?

        • Life’sWinner

          To see what it is like to be one one the working poor.

          • Johan Spånberg

            Yeah.. Beause only rich people buy Iphones… Right?

          • Life’sWinner

            Correct but not always in the classical definition, rich in intelligence applies here too my good man.

          • Johan Spånberg

            Yeah, true intelligence is shown by choosing whatever works best for you… There is nothing intelligent about stalking and trying to offend people who has made another choice… It is common around insecure jealous people though.

          • Life’s Winner

            So you your saying your stalking and trying to offend me?

          • Lou_Sasshole

            Not a bright cookie are ya (don’t answer that)?

          • Johan Spånberg

            No, I rarely visit Mac newspapers and try to offend people for choosing Mac stuff.

  • Jackie

    Oh no doubt this story will be on the ‘Tech News Today’ Podcast where it will get slammed by the insanely biased hosts (especially Sarah Lane) because there’s some serious Apple distortion going on there too, with that whole TWIT Network.

    Microsoft really can do no right in the Press these days. Apple no wrong.

  • Kazi

    It’s about time to punch in their faces. Thanks Frank.

  • Wtechrover

    It’s even so obvious. Glad Europe is not drinking the same stuff.

    • kid92

      I was wondering that, I live here in Miami and the amount of blind Apple fans here is insane. How is the crowd moving in Europe? like the younger 20-30 years of age crowd? and how do they perceive Microsoft? I am curious lol

      • Lou_Sasshole

        Unfortunately here in Australia it isnt much better, a lot of younger people 18-25 are in love with Apple (mostly in regards to laptops and PC with smartphones Android is a bit more popular now).

        • DrBoxX

          Maybe MSFT fans tend to be 40 year chubby white guys who are going bald…

          • Lou_Sasshole

            Oh please lol

          • azone

            Either you are using his avatar or you look eerily similar to Richard from the Howard Stern Show :)

          • Lou_Sasshole

            Haha yeah it’s good ol Richard Christy :)

            My username is one of the ones he used in his phony phone calls.

          • Guest

            That’s just mean, maybe he looks nothing like his icon picture.

            Besides just because most look like that does not mean all do, some are older 😉

  • Shoey5

    It’s actually very true, I talk to a lot of people who are very delusional when it comes to Apple. Sales people are just as bad and of course, these media types are the cherry on top. They’re so in love with Apple, they put a positive spin on everything Apple does even when they get scewed up the you know where! It’s actually quite funny when you think about it. It’s almost like Apple has found the key to marketing, realize your customer is an idiot…..

    • Lou_Sasshole

      Yep and those iDiots think that they are smart, they have this smug attitude where they think they are enlightened for using Apple products.

      • DrBoxX

        No, that iNLGHTENED, they understand quality ROi

  • WebUser

    If you haven’t heard me say it, here it goes again: “US media is full of anti-Microsoft assholes!” I have been saying this since 2007. That’s Microsoft’s only problem. How about start with this: don’t send assholes like walt Mossberg, joshua topolsky a review unit. And tell them they are not welcome to touch a Microsoft product.

  • azone

    Well, the argument by Frank Shaw and most of the folks here is well made..but I find it hard to blame the tech press in particular….that is not to say that they don’t have glaring flaws…they should and could very well do a better job of focusing on the merits on new products instead of trying to fit them into a mold carved out by successful predecessors in the same domain but their actions are largely guided by acceptance by general public ( both in terms of content they post and the products that have the maximum appeal )…Microsoft does face real problems with regard to it’s app ecosystem ( bit of a chicken and egg situation ) given the pre-existing, entrenched players and I believe that if they manage to solve that, the tide in the press will also turn…..until then, unfair as it may be, the press can’t be expected to help a lot….

    • Guest

      You make valid and thoughtful point in your post, F-OFF that crap is not welcomed here!

      • azone

        LOL..alright :)

  • DrBoxX

    it’s funny Apple has made Corporate MSFT cry has hard as their fanboys.

    • Kruegerman

      Buzz off, iTard. It’s Apple’s that’s crying because Microsoft put out a device that goes after two of Apple’s products simultaneously.

      • DrBoxX

        See another crying fanboy, you and Frank should get a hanky and wipe each other tears. Come on, turn the frown upside down, baby boy.

        • ricecube88

          its funny how a toy company APPL is trying too hard to comeup with something people use to “Work”

          • DigTheNoise

            Yup. And you know why iWorks is free … nobody is using it so you might as well give it away and see if that creates any adoption.

    • Sunovavic

      Not as hard as your mama thought when Balmer stuck is head inside your mom’s hole! :)

      • Guest

        Sadly my mom was no different the general public as a whole and share holders in particular MSFT lead by Ballmer has been screwing over all of us for years with over priced crap products – I am glad you see that too friend .

        Though it sound as if unlike most of us your bending over and can not wait to get it again from big sweaty monkey boy!

        • Sunovavic

          over priced crap? lol… iCraps are over priced… not cheap like your mom. I built my own systems… never bent over like you iTards!

          • Pedro

            Haha! Now try to build your own 10″ one pound tablet similar to iPad Air 😛 Hehe lame PC fanboy, you can’t do that now, can you? And you can’t even build your own laptop 😛 Lame ass 😛

          • Orc

            Surface Pro is a laptop. And why should they build something similar to ipad air?

          • Sunovavic

            Hey retard… I don’t have to build one since it’s cheaper to buy one and I get more for the price… Not as cheap as your whorish mother though!

    • Sugadevan

      You know cook cried on the ipad air launch event?

      • donzebe

        cry of desperation

    • donzebe

      NL 2520 is coming, Run ipad Run, ifan run, run as fast as you can NL 2520 just a few feet away just keep running.

  • clay113

    Great article. The usefulness of the Surface line trumps every non windows tablet on the market, and many OEM windows tablets to boot. Still, all I can read are sites trying to pigeon hole and nitpick it. “Is it a tablet or a laptop” or “it can be confusing to switch between metro and the desktop.” It has become very annoying that flexibility and choice have become a negative while Apple and Google dictate your experience. Written from my Surface with 8.1.

  • Kruegerman

    Frank didn’t even mention using Surface 2 as an RDP client. No iOS or Android device can touch the Surface as an RDP client, even with Microsoft themselves have announced RDP apps for both of the competing platforms.

    • Guest

      Frank understand that 98% of the buying public don’t give two shakes of a lamb ass about RDP. It something pimply faced over weight first year IT undergrade cares about.

      • JRV

        And the CxOs that are RDP end users…

        • Guest

          Why I said 98% rather then 99%

  • Pedro

    Shaw is full of shit. He says “helping folks kill time on a tablet is relatively easy” – OH REALLY? Then where are my fucking games on Windows RT, man? No games – no sales for your RT shit, man. Got eat your own lies idiot.

    I start trusting liars like Shaw ONLY after I see MS actually stopping TALKING shit and starting DOING shit. So far I see massive releases of major gaming franchises like XCOM, KOTOR, Dead Trigger, Infinity Blade, etc etc, a flood of super high quality games for iOS, some of them are amazingly good on latest $499 iPad.

    On RT? NOTHING. Just shit and nothingness. The only thing stupid MS got with RT is the loss of all its OEMs. No one, NO ONE makes RT shit now except MS, ’cause no one buys it, why buy $499 tablet with no apps when there is iPad which is the lightest 10″ tablet in the world that is flooded with 500,000 of apps. Man…

    So yeah, Shaw can suck me off, stupid liar. Until MS gets its shit together and starts producing tablets people ACTUALLY DO BUY, like Bay Trail based tablets, until this moment I’ll keep laughing at MS childish and clumsy lies.

    Not that Apple is saint here, they also can get away with tons and tons of shit and lies, but if you just abstract yourself from the corporate propaganda of both, and JUST look at the PRODUCT they sell, without any bias, you’ll see 1) super thin and lightest in the world 10″ tablet with fastest hardware with 500,000 high quality apps on Apple side and 2) clumsy heavy mediocre tablets with no decent consumer apps or games on Microsoft’s side, with an OS everyone ridicules and even the OEMs themselves ignore, preferring to deal with much better selling full Windows 8.1 on Bay Trail.

    I mean, whatever, let MS bullshit you with propaganda, but please guys do not ignore objective reality here, ’cause MS was ignoring it for a LONG time, with bald idiot Ballmer laughing at iPhone all these years.

    Look at what it brought Microsoft into, look at it guys! Do not buy cheapo Shaw’s propaganda! It is NOT better in any way than cheapo Apple propaganda.

    • ricecube88

      you should get off internet and get a life

    • tdog

      Does this guy know that the surface pro 2 has millions of apps and the best PC gaming in the world?

      • azone

        That is a good point but Microsoft chose to port Windows to ARM and position RT as a mobile platform…and as far as mobile platforms are concerned ,they certainly has a long way to go before they can attract the kind of developer interest that is seen on iOS…iDevices, as we all know, are primarily used to consumption of content and therefore have games developed specifically for ’em…people tend to compare the whole gamut of applications available on different platforms and the viability of RT itself is gonna be in question if Microsoft can’t catch up to Apple/Google..I hope they succeed ‘cuz more competition is always good for the customers

        • Guest

          There you go again, keep it up with that clear reasoning BS and your going to get your A$$ band!!!

          • azone

            LOL..maybe you are right ..I guess we will find out :)

          • Guest

            Not only intelligent post but a healthy sense of humor boy are you in trouble, next your going to say tech really isn’t that important and piss everyone off!

          • azone

            lol ..damn, it is like you read my mind …thanks for the laugh..and the friendly warning :)

      • Pedro

        “Does this guy know that the surface pro 2 has millions of apps and the best PC gaming in the world?”

        Yah, I’m going to enjoy your butthurt and thorough ass pain when you play your lousy Crysis 3 on a JUST A TOUCH SCREEN on Surface Pro, while I’m fluently and quickly dispatch zombies in beautiful Dead Trigger 2 or do a nice shootout in no less beautiful ShadowGun, or NOVA3 or MC4 or… a ton of other SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR TOUCH 3D shooters. Of which RT has NONE. And probably never will, given that all OEMs quickly dumped the dead platform and consumers didn’t buy it too leading to massive billion dollar write off from MS. You missed that very important part about “specifically designed for touch”, which clearly shows you know precisely ZERO about modern touch shooters on iOS, hence your opinioon can be safely ignored.

        Come back when you learn the basics and compare your lousy kbd/mouse optimized Crysis 3 on touch screen with some real iPad touch screen optimized beauty like ShadowGun or Dead Trigger 2 😛

        • Orc

          The beauty of Surface is that its not limited to just touch when it comes to gaming.

          But what I don’t understand, why you are so butthurt?

          • Pedro

            “The beauty of Surface is that its not limited to just touch when it comes to gaming”

            In MS fanboy speak this means “Surface can’t play touch games because gaming studios are not interested in producing really beautiful big budget touch optimized content for the dead platform called Windows RT”

            Yeah I hear ya brother 😉 Everybody knows RT is dead, in the next quarter or two MS will announce another billion dollar write off on stillborn Surface 2 and maybe with new CEO replacing dumb idiot Ballmer they switch to Bay Trail and full x86 Windows 8.x, maybe then their consumer tablet platform will stand a chance. We’ll see.

          • Orc

            Every app game Works with touch.

          • Sunovavic

            The only things dead is your mom after she got butt hurt by me :)

          • Pedro

            “The only things dead is your Windows RT OEM mom after she got butt hurt by me”

            Are you agent of Apple? Or Google? ‘Cause there must be reason why OEMs ran away from dead RT so fast, did you rape their moms for profit, for glory or just for the fuck of it? 😉 Don’t hesitate bro, spill your beans, I always dreamed to meet the man responsible for RT’s death and for scaring OEMs away from MS and now I met one, finally! So I’m all ears, start talking bitch hehe 😉

          • Sunovavic

            lol don’t know where to begin… can barely understand your rumblings with your mouth full of Tim Cock… I didn’t know RT’s dead… Probably your mom… who probably hated to have a sob of a bitch like you!

          • Pedro

            “I didn’t know RT’s dead”

            Sure, and you didn’t even know MS posted a huge billion dollar wrote off last quarter because no one was buying RT. Well, if you don’t know the most basic facts about RT, why are you making posts on the topic? To look dumber than you really are?

          • Sunovavic

            So it means it’s dead? You’re mama is dead and hopefully soon you will follow.

          • Pedro

            Yeah, if nobody buys the tablet because there are no apps for it and the hardware/OS are crappy, it means it is dead. Welcome to the real world, stupid Ballmer fanboy.

            “You’re mama” – LOL :) So you are illiterate too, can’t write proper English. Goes together nice with your general lack of intelligence and insight into market.

          • Sunovavic

            Lol you actually point out my grammar mistakes? It’s funny coz no one can barely understand you. Ok… your mama is a dead whore! Thanks for correcting that! I guess you can really relate to RT… just like nobody likes you, not even your whore of a mom and you wish you were dead too!

          • Pedro

            No need to wish RT dead, Ballmer penetrated your tight virgin ass and killed RT this way, so why are you still sucking his cock?

          • Sunovavic

            You really are obsessed with penetration…. Did your dad molest you and your sister?

          • Pedro

            You really are obsessed with fucking your mom…. Did your mom suck you off when you were a little boy?

          • Sunovavic

            Lame… Running out of comebacks? Go ask your dad for some cumbacks in your mouth.

          • Pedro

            Not before you suck off your fat bald MS lover one more time 😛

        • kalval

          I’d much rather play fps with an xbox controller (surface compatible by the way) that with horrible touch controls. Who ever though that was a good idea?
          I’m not saying the RT app situation is good, it is far from it, but I don’t think you’re making anybody “butthurt” with a list of touchscreen fps games. Touch is a lousy input method for anything but puzzle games and very simple adventure/rpg.

          • Pedro

            “Touch is a lousy input method for anything but puzzle games and very simple adventure/rpg”

            I see you have never played any decent touch FPS like Dead Trigger or NOVA3 or MC4 (I finished both NOVA3 and MC4 on my ATIV S WP8 phone by the way :P), of course you have not a slightest idea about this stuff. Hence your opinion can be safely ignored.

    • JRV

      The Apple claim that Shaw refutes is that the iPad is a productivity tool, in addition to a toy. Shaw’s blog shows what an incredibly foolish claim that is. And he is right on target. Would that MS marketing could get the message across as clearly and articulately as Shaw has.

    • kalval

      “1) super thin and lightest in the world 10″ tablet with fastest hardware with 500,000 high quality apps on Apple side and 2) clumsy heavy mediocre tablets with no decent consumer apps or games on Microsoft’s side”

      The fact you point out NONE of the advantages of windows 8/RT does not suggest absence of bias.

      Ignore the fact you can’t even watch a video while you play a game/browser the web/whatever else you like to do at the same time on that thin and light tablet. Ignore that you can’t plug in a portable hard drive/usb stick/printer/xbox controller. Ignore that you can’t easily open a file in the app of your choice, or attach multiple files to an email, or browse files, or delete files. With ipad you literally need an app for everything, and flow between apps is nowhere near as smooth as windows.

      Other points:

      -ipad is provably not the fastest tablet

      -thin is not useful unless you’ve drunk the apple koolaid, it needs to be easy to hold, although being light is important

      -a surface is not great at being an ipad. It is good at being a tablet with specific advantages and disadvantages, if you were actually objective you could see that. This is why anything running windows 8 seems to get low scores on a lot of tech sites, they only try to use it as they would use an ipad and they find there aren’t enough apps. If they tried multitasking on an ipad, or any of the other things the surface can do but ipad cant do, ipad might not score so well either.

      -ipad is not good at being a surface, the operating system’s capabilities make it looks like something from the 90s in comparison. It also has specific advantages (hardware and apps) and disadvatages (everything else – software capabilities, connectivity, variety of devices available, productivity)

      -windows 8.1/RT from a technical standpoint is far better than iOS. The multitasking and drivers for nearly every usb device ever made, and also the operating system design including UI, workflow, capability vs power efficiency balance, is light years ahead of iOS.

      -Windows 8.1 (especially RT) still has a big app issue. Microsoft need to focus their massive advertising budget on app creators. If they’d spent that $1B marketing budget for windows 8 on getting good apps onto the platform they would have nearly mitigated Apple’s app advantage by now.

      • Pedro

        Yeah I agree with you kalval, what’s the point of nice hardware and OS when there are no apps?

        These niche things like browsing and watching video at the same time, or plugging in a USB printer and other legacy shit – these are not interesting for mass consumer, this is why MS keeps writing off billions and no one keeps buying RT.

        The most important part, which is apps, was totally ignored by MS and hence they lost the war with iOS and Android. They don’t understand how to make devices that appeal to mas consumer. Apple understands it with their excellent design and very simple UI that any average Joe form the street grasps immediately, Google also undertsands it by selling high quality Nexus 7 tablet for dirt cheap.The only loser here is MS who jacks the prices for their RT shit like there is no tomorrow.

        The end result? RT is dead, there are no apps on horizon, OEMs abandon MS and move to Android one by one, MS is doomed in mobile. It’s a failure Zune style, plain and simple.

        MS has their only chance in tablets if they were smart and if they had chosen Atom and full Windows 8 as their tablet platform, and if they were selling them at a loss, THEN the sales of their tablets would be MUCH larger.

        But, being a brain dead bald idiot, their CEO decided that making horribly overpriced tablet with ARM and RT and no apps was much better idea.

        Well, mark my words man – from now on it’s a way down for MS, the billion dollar write off on Surface RT is just THE BEGINNING. Wait for the real huge write off for Surface 2 next year.

        MS blew their chances by refusing to adopt Bay Trail as their tablet platform and now they are dead, it’s BlackBerry 2.0 or Zune 2.0 all over again.

        Just seat back and enjoy this sad show…

  • Henry

    MS really needs to improve its marketing.

    • Pookiewood

      People keep saying this but every channel I turn has a MS ad for Windows 8, Windows Phone or the XBOX. Online its the same story. This is one of the most over used comments.

      • Henry

        Ads != Marketing. Good marketing has a lot of aspects, ad is but just one of them.

        • Frank Turner

          I dunno. I’ve been sort of happily amazed that I’m starting to see MS devices around TV. I dropped in on the Fox NFL pre-game show a couple of weeks ago, and all the analysts had Surfaces sitting in front of them. I think that show The Mindy Project is MS heavy, I’ve seen several Windows Phones there as well as a Surface or two. I think things are turning around a bit marketing-wise for MS finally.

  • Guest

    Dear Frank,
    You must understand when you put out poorly designed products for over twenty years; Bob, Vista, Zune, Kin, WP7, XBox, Window ME, Window Phone, IE 6, Tablet PC, Window8, Office “Ribbons”, Play4Sure, it is going to take a while to regain credibility. And flopping with the first gen Surfaces was not the way to do it. It is time to talk less and execute better.


    Non MSFT Fanboy
    a.k.a: 99% of the World, Average Joe & Jane, Never Worked in I.T.

    • Aaron Abraham

      i like zune and think its excellently designed.Office ribbon also is good for me.

    • donzebe

      Thanks for using a Windows PC.
      Thanks for having interest in all our products,
      Keep on memorizing the list before and after meals.
      we have products for everybody at all price range.
      We want you to have a choice.

      Next time open your Windows for more fresh air.
      That’s all it takes, Windows.

    • Frank Turner

      I think the point many people here may be making is that with many of the products you list – design is NOT the problem, public perception is. The Zune was great, but it was perceived as an iPod knockoff by most people. Windows Phone is a really nice system with a compelling UI alternative to the app-grid vision of IOS and Android. The Mojave Project showed that a lot of the perceptions of Vista were incorrect. These aren’t perfect products, but they really suffered much more from the way they were viewed, driven by the way the tech press covered them, that they were failed products.

      • Guest

        Frank you make some reasonable points and in some cases it was perception such as Zune. It wasn’t a bad product in itself but it was too late with a poorly developed ecosystem.

        Moreover this issue about product not being bad but it’s perception feeds into a continual Blind Spot at MFSt that it up to the consumer to figure out the value of the product rather building it well enough for the value to show. Even now I hear people here saying it takes the company 3 generation to get it right with MSFT. This use to be ok in the 80 and 90s but no loner the case

        • Frank Turner

          Totally valid point about the problem with relying on the consumer to find out the value of a product. I’d like to think the cream will rise to the top in these types of things, but unfortunately, I don’t think history shows that to be the case, usually.

          I’m not really sure the ecosystem is relevant with the Zune. I tend to think of them along the same lines as the pre-Touch iPods, before apps were a thing on the devices.

    • laserfloyd

      You’re saying the Xbox is a poorly designed product? Zune wasn’t poorly designed either, just poorly received or rather, perceived. I’ve had my ZuneHD for nearly 4 years and I’m going to be sad when it dies.

  • Florin N

    It’s easy for Apple to act like a cult, when you CAN buy their products.
    I leave in a country in the EU and I have never seen or touched a Surface.Is it fair? Not even the Xbox exists here.
    Apple is a US focused company, but still I have 1 store, here in my city, and many third-party stores where I can buy any iDevice I want.
    So MS, before you start raging at everybody for the lack of sales, credibility etc. do everybody a favour and make your hardware AVAILABLE for purchase everywhere.
    Until then…take it as it is.

    P.S.: we also have Chromebooks available.

    • Florin N

      My point is: in the case of the Surface, a tablet you can see-hold-touch is better than a one you only see in ads and on the web.
      It all comes down to this.

      • NegLewis

        Yes there are…
        Lots of stores have them… but IF you want to play with one, … first you must buy it.

  • donzebe

    Most 10 inch or less windows tablet from other OEM are coming with free office 2013.

  • Mindi B

    The sad fact is this: it’s only us really, who complain about Apple. Sure you can throw Fandroids into the mix, but really, it’s us.

    Us Surface users, WP users, W8 users. Sure, we like what MS has done, we know they’re not perfect, no one is. Sure I think they could’ve done things better in the last say, 3 years.

    But they are NOT doing themselves favours here. Nothing INITIALLY has gone right:

    * WP7 – blunder.
    * Windows 8 – blunder
    * Surface gen 1 – blunder
    * Windows RT – blunder
    * Marketing – blunder

    All of these things are things THEY CANNOT make mistakes on. Yet, they have, and they continue to. And let’s watch – how much of Nokia’s marketing brains will they really use? Probably jack shit to be honest.

    Microsoft are NOT modernising their culture. By the time they release their products, even if good (which, in their defence, they are, because I love my Surface, I love WP8, I’m getting comfy with W8.1), it’s already too late. Their catch up tactics do not work in today’s technology world. They got away with it years ago, but not now.

    Look at Paul Thurrotts site – how often does he get sick and tired of MS making the same mistakes, time and time again? How frustrated every time they stumble? It’s damn embarrassing to use MS products these days. Their reputation is in tatters. I get laughed at in my workplace for loving my Lumia 925, and it’s not because of the Nokia aspect, it’s because of the WINDOWS OS, the WINDOWS name. NO ONE likes it. And I repeat, NO ONE.

    MS execs can defend themselves and their products all they want, it’s only adding fuel to the fire. They need to shut and do the job right. FAST. Sure their company has had a restructure, but they need YOUNG and MODERN people who understand today’s tech world and today’s consumer (read, consumer, not enterprise is what I’m talking about here) tech culture.

    I want them to succeed. I really do. But this is getting pathetic.

    • kalval

      OS wise windows 8.1/RT are light years ahead of the competition. The only mistakes really are in how they have approached the app shortage. Windows 8 wasn’t too late (as a tablet OS), but they needed to be very proactive in getting apps on the store on day 1.
      With regard to surface RT, yes it is a good product, but it had to be the best product by a good margin to get people to even look at it over the ipad. It suffered initially performance wise and its screen was sub standard (also related to the power issue).
      The tech media also have been a thorn in microosft’s side since day 1 of surface. Every single review is based on how good the surface is at being an ipad. It was never designed to be an ipad. They give the ipad a massive advantage by only looking at how well the surface does things that the ipad is usually used for, but they never make it a fair comparison by trying to make the ipad do the things the surface can do, like multitasking, flash content, usb, things that require OS-wide access to files (a proper file system), etc. And if it doesn’t get good reviews, it doesn’t get widely adopted and it doesn’t get apps developed for it, compounding the problem.
      Tbh in my experience people always ask me about my surface and windows phone, and are always genuinely impressed by the quality of the products, and especially the flexibility of the surface compared to their ipads. I’ve not yet encountered a single bad reaction to the windows name.
      I think the post-vista Microsoft really has churned out a lot of high quality products, but the focus on apps that was started by the smartphone revolution has really hurt them. Their biggest, and really only significant failing was not doing more to retain windows developers and transition them over to the tablet/phone ecosystem with better incentives.

    • SategB

      A very well reasoned and thoughtful post. It is wonderful your willing to show there is some intelligence on the net but I afraid it may get you hurt.

      I suggest future post be limited to:
      MSFT ROCKS, ___________________________ (Insert company here, i.e.: Apple, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, McDonalds, Andy’s Shoe Repair, ect ) SUCKS DONKEY TAILS.

      It will make you tons more popular and able to receive many more precious Up-Votes, that as we are all aware, if collected with enough vigilance and quantity will get you to heaven (or afterlife of your choosing).

  • alukard

    Wow, the vitriol in here is palpable. Chill out people.

  • OGLark

    Tob be fair to the press, most of them are comparing iWorks for Macs to Office365 subscription model. Free is better than $100 for four licenses. In reality the cost of iWorks is incorporated in the price of new Apple hardware which has a higher price point than Wintel+OEM competition. But it does threaten the MS business model for Office. Then again Google office apps and LibreOffice have been around for a while and Office is still going strong. I’m pretty sure that free iWorks on Macs is not going to make a significant dent in MS sales with corporations.

  • Keifwoki

    I think it’s time for someone in the mainstream tech media to raise the issue of all the bs in Apples press events! The evidence is all there to back it up, and it will actually be a story that alot of people will read… people always like seeing and reading about when the popular fall from grace! Apple are great at selling crap to dumb asses, and it becomes more and more obvious with every new itoy announced! They had a good product, now it doesn’t even come close to its competitors.. They only have one stand out trait over the others and that is the number of apps, which hardly justifies going out and spending nearly a grand for something that basically just does what last years model done! There are better options now, and it is only a matter of time before people see them…

  • free

    The problem here is Shaw misses the point. Everyone knows what Microsoft have been trying to do in combining an enterprise & consumer device. The problem is most people don’t use their personal devices for work they only want a consumer version. For these people that makes the surface a compromise they do not need to make.

    Microsoft have the balance wrong to get the consumer only market.