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Microsoft Surface vs. Apple iPad: David vs. Goliath. Can Microsoft Compete?

Can Microsoft compete against the mightly iPad for tablet suprency?


When Microsoft announced that they were releasing their own branded tablet on Monday, they definitely got some heads to turn.  A lot of long-awaited features announced with the tablet, but there were also many lacking details we may have otherwise received at an Apple product announcement.  Still, Microsoft did exactly what it came to do with this announcement; get people talking.

Is Their Market Space For The Microsoft Surface?

It goes without saying that Microsoft is behind the curve when it comes to tablets.  Apple is now on its third iteration of the iPad and it seems that there is a new Android tablet with better specs coming out every week.  The Kindle Fire is absolutely swallowing the budget market so there really isn’t much room left in this market for a new tablet.  Or is there?  What can Microsoft bring to the table that these can’t? First we must look at what these other tablets have in common.

How People Currently Use Tablets.

Although there are many tablets competing on the market today they all have one thing in common; they are all designed to be consumption devices.  All the tablets on the market primarily display content.  Web pages, books, music, movies, apps, these are all the primary functions of all the tablets on the market today and they all have varying levels of success doing this.  I know what you’re saying now; What about the Transformer Prime with its keyboard attachment?  To that I say ask anyone that’s actually used it. It’s a great idea but it was poorly executed.  The keyboard is a tool used for creation that is slapped on a device used for consuming.

What Microsoft Must Do To Beat Apple.

Microsoft needs to market this device correctly or else it will go the route of the HP TouchPad.  If Microsoft tries to go head to head with Apple as a consumption device it will fail.  What Microsoft needs to do is market this device as something that can be used to create, just like their desktop line.  Here are a few examples I’ve come up with and read on forums:

  • With everyone and their mother attaching a GoPro to their extreme sporting vehicle of choice, have someone edit footage on the go on their Microsoft Surface.  Show people how valuable that USB port really is and make people question why the iPad doesn’t have one.
  • In a business meeting have someone edit their Powerpoint presentation last second to add something crucial that was missed.  For extra cheesiness make sure the boss congratulates the presenter after the presentation.
  • Have a hectic mother running around doing things for a young child’s birthday party.  Someone hands her the camera and as she’s walking she uploads the pictures to her tablet, gets rid of some red-eye, and e-mails them to the loving Grandma as she lights the birthday cake.
  • These are all things that cannot be executed easily on an Apple device.  You could argue that the last example given could be done with just an iPhone/iPad but even with current advancements I’ve found that people still like to have a separate camera for taking photos of those very special moments.

Mirosoft Surface Is Welcomed Competition In A Good Position.

Although Microsoft is definitely behind the curve when it comes to the tablet, they have still put themselves in a very favorable position to be a big contender in the market.  Their press conference was most definitely a home run, thought it could have been a grand slam if they had come more ready. One thing is for certain, the competition is more than welcome.  It drives down costs and more importantly forces companies to be more creative when it comes to product development, and not just simply improving upon what “just works.”

Image Via Tech2

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Ryan Chua

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