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Microsoft again shows how Surface RT fares against Apple's iPad

Apple has previously enjoyed kicking Microsoft down with the famous Mac versus PC advertisement campaign. It was a giggle to see Apple attempting to be trendy against Microsoft's "boring" OS and PCs in general. Now it's Microsoft's turn to hit back and the company is continuing its Apple-bashing run with the above advert, putting the Surface RT against the popular iPad.

Comparing weight and thickness, as well as overall dimensions, Microsoft highlights all the added benefits that come with a Surface Windows RT tablet. Two examples being the integrated kickstand, enabling you to prop up the device without an overpriced accessory and the Office suite pre-installed that helps you get off the mark with opening and editing documents while on the move.

You've then got a full-sized USB port and $150 off the price of the 16GB iPad ($499), which is a considerable step up from the Surface RT at only $349. That said, Microsoft and OEM partners are struggling to move units and Windows RT has been an absolute pain for consumers (it's not full Windows 8 and caused confuson), not to mention some issues that need addressing. So while it's pleasing to see such advertising come out of Redmond, we can't help but wonder if it will make a difference. 

Source: YouTube; thanks, Nishy, for the heads up!

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Comments

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aaa6112 says:

Windows RT has been an absolute pleasure, for me. Love it. I use it as a tablet OS and don't expect it to perform as a full-fledged laptop/PC OS.

pmich says:

This definitely makes me want to get a windows tablet.   Clearly shows multiple benefits of the device over the stale ipad.  

sholokov says:

You will not be disappointed, especially with W8.1 on it's way. It is only going to get better. Office now includes full fledged Outlook as well.

I love my Surface RT, and I will not be convinced otherwise! "To each his own" I guess. I'm currently in college perusing a Bachelors degree, and the Windows RT caters to my needs.

icyrock1 says:

Some of the points in the comercial are misleading, though. While having a bigger screen it has less surface area due to the aspect ratio they choice, they say the keyboard in "integrated" (when in reality it's a seperate $100 perchace and the only notation of this they gave was a very small gray text on white back ground that lasted around a second), the office included is "limited" currently to the desktop part (which, on such a small screen needs to be scalled up. But, thankfully, Windows 8.1 has Metro versions of them) and you can't use the office suite for business purposes (due to it being home and student).
 
TBH, I think Windows RT is pointless. They should have just added any functionality it has to Windows Phone for phablets/tablets(since both are made to run on the ARM archetecture) and have a single ARM OS.

Racxie says:

It does state "keyboard sold separately"

icyrock1 says:

I know. That's why I mentioned that it shows up in small, gray texts for around a second that's hardly noticeable unless you know to look for it.

davidD93 says:

All companies do something similar though, Apple would certainly do it - it's like the 'sequences shortened' phrase - every single phone/tablet advert has that, no matter what company or OS it is. 

icyrock1 says:

Ain't that the truth. Did you hear about the shark week stuff? Discovery tried to pass that off has real, and added a small disclamer on to the end that lasted a few seconds.

prlundberg says:

Speak for yourself.  I want more than a glorified app launcher in a tablet.

Hit nail on head.

icyrock1 says:

"Speak for yourself.  I want more than a glorified app launcher in a tablet."
 
And, yet, Windows RT is a glorified app launcher, too. 

     

    prlundberg says:

    No, RT is a real OS.  Complete with multitasking, file management, user profiles, standardized device drivers, and a desktop-level browser.
     
     

    icyrock1 says:

    "OS" is a loose term. Every OS has some kind of multitasking (however limited), file management (because apps depend on it), and drivers. You're using the term "app launcher" wrong; app launcher is any interface which can open an app (i.e., any OS worth it's salt). What you meant to say, is that RT offers far better file management and control over the device.

    prlundberg says:

    I thought my meaning was obvious, but since you are hung up on symantics I'll try again:
    RT is a much more powerful OS  than iOS and Android because it natively does things we expect out of PC-level OS in ways that iOS and Android can't match.

    Bruno H says:

    "
    and you can't use the office suite for business purposes (due to it being home and student).
    "
    If you have a business licesn at work for Office (which frankly most have) then its ok to do business work on this version of Office.

    icyrock1 says:

    "If you have a business licesn at work for Office (which frankly most have) then its ok to do business work on this version of Office."

    The most common version of office is home and student (has it's the version that's cheapest, and the version most OEM's sell).

    Bruno H says:

    Yes you are right, but what have it to do with my comment that most businesses have paid for Office licenses for work?

    icyrock1 says:

    Ah, I misinterpreted your statment. I thought you said it was the most common, period and that most had that version.

    Bruno H says:

    Yes you are right, but what have it to do with my comment that most businesses have paid for Office licenses for work?

    ymcpa says:

    Does wp support a mouse cursor? If it doesn't then I completely disagree with using it on a tablet. It's the cursor that make the tablet useful for productivity. Excel is very difficult to use with touch and even word is easier to use when doing things like cut & paste, moving text, formatting, etc.  sometimes you need the fine control that a mouse provides.

    icyrock1 says:

    "Does wp support a mouse cursor? If it doesn't then I completely disagree with using it on a tablet. It's the cursor that make the tablet useful for productivity. Excel is very difficult to use with touch and even word is easier to use when doing things like cut & paste, moving text, formatting, etc.  sometimes you need the fine control that a mouse provides."
     
    I'm saying they could add the support by merging the two OS's (has both run on the same kernel, and both are supposed to run on ARM chips). Obviously, maintaining two OS's is more work than one, right? So merging them should make less work for them in the long run.

    someoneinwa says:

    Point 1. Screens have been measured by size, measured diagonally since the dawn of television. It was only when Microsoft started comparing the Surface to the iPad that we suddenly learned that we now need to use surface area of screens because some desperate Apple fan needed to find a new measurement to defend his smaller iPad. Point 2. The keyboard is integrated in that there are connectors for it built into the Surface. The ad notes it is sold separately so are we really going to compare the seconds a disclaimer is on screen now? Point 3. The included Office does not include a commercial use license, true. But students don't need a commercial license and there is a way around that limitation as someone else pointed out to you here. And besides, so what. The Surface includes Office. The iPad does not. Who cares if it is on the desktop? Point 4. Scaling up is an issue? You mean like the iPhone apps that run on the iPad? Point 5.Windows 8.1 Preview certainly doesn't have Metro versions of Office. I've heard there may be versions coming next year, but I haven't heard they are part of 8.1.

    AIA, you don't have to like RT. That doesn't make it pointless. Surface RT is working for at least a few folks out there and at its new and far more appropriate price can do even better.

    icyrock1 says:

    "Point 1. Screens have been measured by size, measured diagonally since the dawn of television. It was only when Microsoft started comparing the Surface to the iPad that we suddenly learned that we now need to use surface area of screens because some desperate Apple fan needed to find a new measurement to defend his smaller iPad. "

    Not completely true. Different aspect-ratios have been a measuring point, since computer monitors were made (3:4, 10:16, 3:5, 9:16, etc). Both are important (IMO) because together both give you the true size of your screen.

    "Point 2. The keyboard is integrated in that there are connectors for it built into the Surface. The ad notes it is sold separately so are we really going to compare the seconds a disclaimer is on screen now? "

    If you can't read it, how do you know what it says? Why do you think the "Shark week" controversy is such big news right now?

    http://www.associatednews.com/entertainment/megalodon-controversy-in-sha...

    It's because they mislead their audience.

    "Point 3. The included Office does not include a commercial use license, true. But students don't need a commercial license and there is a way around that limitation as someone else pointed out to you here. "

    Which will set you back another $219 to be able to use it for work related purposes. When someone advertises that you can be productive on it, do work on it, do you not assume that you won't have to spend more money to be able to legally do that?

    "And besides, so what. The Surface includes Office. The iPad does not. Who cares if it is on the desktop? "

    Because it's not touch friendly? Seriously? This is a tablet. Not a desktop. Touch support is a necessity. It's the only thing that all features that are marketed for a tablet I want to potentially buy *need* to have.

    "Point 4. Scaling up is an issue? You mean like the iPhone apps that run on the iPad? "

    No. I mean having to scale things up to 140% to make them workable on the desktop (which wouldn't be so bad if Microsoft had made the icon's more dynamic, but that's a deeper problem that likely can't be fixed easily).

    "Point 5.Windows 8.1 Preview certainly doesn't have Metro versions of Office. I've heard there may be versions coming next year, but I haven't heard they are part of 8.1."

    From what i've read, it might happen.

    http://www.pcworld.com/article/2040487/did-our-first-glimpse-of-metro-of...

    "AIA, you don't have to like RT. That doesn't make it pointless. Surface RT is working for at least a few folks out there and at its new and far more appropriate price can do even better."

    I think you misunderstood me. I'm saying, that they should merge it with Windows Phone (and have the desktop be accessible when you reach a certain screen size), because both run on ARM chips, both share the same kernel, and having two ARM OS's would undoubtedly harder than maintaining one.

    wsantiagow says:

    I am a Systems Administrator and I have set up a Terminal server so I can run any applications on my Surface RT including Photoshop CS5, Acrobat Professional, etc. You CAN NOT use a Terminal server with IOS!

    icyrock1 says:

    Again, I'm not arguing that. I'm arguing that RT doesn't need to exist. I'm arguing that it should be merged with Windows Phone.

    Ranepowel says:

    Why would you NEED to on an iPad?

    prlundberg says:

    Very few people NEED a tablet at all. It's a convenience item, and the more it does the more useful it is.

    someoneinwa says:

    icyrock1, I actually agree with you about where WIndows RT and Windows Phone OSs should go and we will probably see something close to that in a year or so. I just thought you were grasping to find points to criticise in the ad. We spend way too much time analyzing ads on tech websites. I know. I've indulged more than once in dumping on some of Apple's ridiculous ads about "magical" iPad features, but let's agree that marketing and a better price point is what Microsoft needs to do to sell the Surface. We'll argue about the details again later.

    icyrock1 says:

    Fair enough. ;)

    Windows Phone and RT should not be joined. Yes they are both ARM OSes, but they are vastly different, I dont like the thought of the RT/8 start screen on my phone. Not to mention the work that would be needed. even iOS, I am sure, is varied between the iPad and iPhone editions. similar, yes. But different in ways too. Having an OS with two completely different UI's (only partially similar in appearance and use) and a system that scales upon a specific screen resolution would be troublesome. Not to mention, phones keep getting higher res screens these days. what do you do with a 1280 x 720 phone and a 1024 x 768 tablet? The phone is vastly larger in one dimension and only slightly smaller in the other. How would the OS chose what the device is?

    RT and Phone for the most part should be separate, but similar. Have underlying similarities, but each have their own usage case, interface, and entity.

    icyrock1 says:

     

      "Windows Phone and RT should not be joined. Yes they are both ARM OSes, but they are vastly different, I dont like the thought of the RT/8 start screen on my phone. "
       
      It is there already to an extent. The Metro UI is there; and that's what the start screen is. Live tiles (albeit, with less suport from developers but it's there).
       
      "Not to mention the work that would be needed. even iOS, I am sure, is varied between the iPad and iPhone editions. similar, yes. But different in ways too. Having an OS with two completely different UI's (only partially similar in appearance and use) and a system that scales upon a specific screen resolution would be troublesome.
       
      Not to mention, phones keep getting higher res screens these days. what do you do with a 1280 x 720 phone and a 1024 x 768 tablet? The phone is vastly larger in one dimension and only slightly smaller in the other. How would the OS chose what the device is?"
       
      It doesn't need to rely on resolution. In programing, there are many ways to measure the size of a device. Resolution is only one of them (and a very bad one to use). DPI and checking the actual screen size work much better.
       
      Having a set limit for when it can access the desktop (around 7-8 inches?) would completely eliminate any choice it would have to make regarding the size of the device.
       
      "RT and Phone for the most part should be separate, but similar. Have underlying similarities, but each have their own usage case, interface, and entity."

       

      That's why I feel they should be merged, actually. Having them together takes out the hassel for manufatures to decide which to use (and lets them be more creative with there devices ala the Asus PhonePad).

      OMG55 says:

      Isn't a case/keyboard adaptor for the ipad a separate purchase? It's consider integrated into the surface because it snaps in an doesn't require a case. Also I'm using the surface RT along with Remote Apps by Microsoft for my legacy corporate apps. So now I'm finding it hard to figure out why I would purchase a tablet with full windows 8 pro on it.

      you wouldnt, but not everybody has the liberty to RDP using MS Remote Desktop into an x86 machine. x86 tablets are geared towards those who rely on x86 software (and peripherals) and require such online and off, as well as those needing more power than what an ARM device can provide.

      RT isnt pointless, but it is flawed. the desktop being included was an awful choice (as well as aids the confusion between RT and 8), lack of tablet version of office from the start was another problem too. RT 8.1 will fix some of these, but till it drops the desktop and is more distinctive, its gonna be a tough sell. That and the price points. only now is the Surface RT in the affordability ballpark, and the Iconia W3 (which, despite the screen, from what ive seen in staples, not being as bad as some would lead you to believe, doesnt win any awards for best hardware design and the screen appears dimly lit.) is cheaper, making it more confusing.

      R0bR says:

      Many RT owners feel the same, myself included, it's the media and those that don't have one who can't imagine life without legacy applications. I'm happy MS is sticking to their guns with RT and look forward to an RTv2.

      in some scenarios people actually need legacy support. Old corporate software (trust me, one place i interned relied heavily on a program that required NET Framework 1.0), as well as certain gaming applications (both old games and intensive games), are some reasons one would need an x86 device. however, some people dont realize there are alternatives, and RT could actually be a better fit for them. its all case specific.

      CreepinJesus says:

      Same for me. As long as you know it's "not Windows as we know it" then there are no issues. You don't hear of iOS being an absolute pain because it's not OSX.

      Ranepowel says:

      Because iOS and OS X are completely different looking, and no one would possibly confuse them. Go to any Best Buy and ask them the return rates of RT devices. It is incredibly high. I wrote an article about that, but I won't link it here out of respect to this site.

      OMG55 says:

      As I mentioned above implement Remote Apps by MS in you corporate environment and you will have access to you legacy apps as tiles on the home screen of any RT device. You will then be asking yourself, "Why should I purchase a Windows 8 pro device for when I have everything I need here on RT".

      Maybe, but it's also been an absolute market failure.  I don't think it's far fetched to call it another 'Zune'.

      someoneinwa says:

      No. Nothing similar at all. Zune never made it out of the US. Surface RT is being sold in lots of places around the world.

      ymcpa says:

      So were the initial android tablets. The cost the same or more than the iPad, were cheaply built, and had poor performance. Did anyone suggest that google should just give up competing.with Apple in the tablet market? They got the prices down and improved the hardware and now they are selling better than the iPad. Microsoft just needs a better processor and screen and it will be competitive. The app market is improving nicely. By the way, Microsoft cancelled the Zune because the market for those devices was drying up. People were using their phones for music and video. iPod sales have been declining for years. There was no reason to keep the Zune going.

      Reeves says:

      One note - when you say "they are selling better than the iPad", what you mean is that there are more Android tablets shipped from a kazillion manufacturers across the globe including cheap junk littering the shelves at Big Lots or K-Mart. The iPad is still - by far - the best SELLING tablet. It is by far the most USED one (85% web tablet impressions).

      Android is surging right now in the 7-inch/$200 and slightly below market. It's a great niche, and it owns it for now. Microsoft has to find a niche as well. I think $200-$300 Baytrail tablets could be it.

      James Allatt says:

      I agree I have had my Surface RT since Feb and it replaced my Xoom and I have to say it is imo the best tablet on the market by a long way. It has stopped me from taking my work laptop home with me and I have yet to come across any issues with it connecting to my exsisting hardware at home. I have even spent a week working from home with it connected to an external monitor and an externa mouse and had no issues.
       
      Microsoft now really need to relaunch the Surface RT and pro with the lower pirce and show the world what it can do compaired to the most used tablets on the market today. I also cant wait for the 8.1 update as it makes the best tablet on the market imo an even better one.

      icyrock1 says:

      True. The problem the RT faced was mainly the price (and that the keyboard wasn't included when they did ALL of the advertisments with it) and lack of apps. Now that the app problem is mostly fixed, they just need to focus on fixing there image and release an awesome product to wow consumers (not just tech geeks; I know many people who are wanted to try Windows 8/RT, but didn't want to give up the fimliarity they had with there current tablet/buy new hardware for the tablet) to the point of switching.

      Miistercoool says:

      Great❕ My fav part is when they let the iPad fall because of its nonexistent kickstand LOL ❗❗❕❗

      Eas195 says:

      LOL. I wonder if their hardware is still OK after that fall.
      Seriously, I need that kickstand integrated on the tablet, like Surface does!

      I still don't really "get" Windows RT. We have the same kernel across Windows 8 and Phone that is ARM capable. Why create a gimped version of Windows 8 for ARM? They should have focused on metro versions of Office and used WP8 with a proper file explorer. That would have allowed them to add more functionality to WP8 too.

      Surface Pro and ATOM tablets would run Windows 8.

      I suppose they could have the same result by removing the desktop from RT, adding metro office, creating a functional metro file explorer, and putting all control panel functions under PC settings where they should be. But I dislike having three separate OS's.

      MethodGT says:

      I use the desktop all the time on my Surface RT. I'm actually really glad it's there.

      icyrock1 says:

      I would love to see them merge Windows RT and Windows Phone. I personally think it's pointless to maintain two ARM based platforms when you can simply merge them and only have to worry about one. They could make the "Desktop" mode a feature for when you have a certain screen size (7+ inches or so?) and have anything smaller than that have only the metro interface.

      YA BILLY says:

      I cannot lie. Surface RT was a major let down when I switched from iPad 3. IPad 3 was alot better. I quickly gave the surface RT to my gf and bought a Surface PRO which is awesome and blows away any apple tablet.

      adrian1338 says:

      great job comparing an ipad to a surface pro .. bought a toyota the other day but it wasnt as good as my gti .. than i switched to a porsche and it blew away both them cars!

      YA BILLY says:

      If you read my post, I am comparing surface rt to iPad 3.

      I'm curious to hear about your let down as well.

      icyrock1 says:

      You did both.
       
       

        "I cannot lie. Surface RT was a major let down when I switched from iPad 3. IPad 3 was alot better. I quickly gave the surface RT to my gf and bought a Surface PRO which is awesome and blows away any apple tablet."
         
        Technacly, you did compare the Pro to an iPad.

         

         

        StuboWPC says:

        What was the let down for you? I'd be curious to hear.

        YA BILLY says:

        For example lag on simple Xbox games like crash course go or monster island

        YA BILLY says:

        I bought a surface rt for my house and dell xps 10 rt for my gf house. Both turned out to be underpowered for my tastes. So, I then got a Asus vivotab smart with atom processor and a surface pro. Don't hate on me. I am a serious windows supporter, I just need more power than an rt with snapdragon that's all.

        I'm looking at buying a surface. There is that much difference between rt and the pro?

        YA BILLY says:

        Big difference. Surface pro has an i5 processor and 4gb ram just to name a few big pluses. So ya its alot better, but the price is much greater obviously.

        icyrock1 says:

        Huge difference.

        If you need:
        Battery life, don't care about the screen resolution, and lack of functionality (no x86 support/legacy apps) then get the RT

        If you want:
        Worse battery life (5 hours or so), amazing screen, amazing functionality, great power and a lot of extras then you want the pro.

        The only bad thing about the Pro is battery life, though, if they do the same thing as Apple did with the 2013 Air and don't boost performance (in fact, it dropped in performance in some instances) but more than makes up for it in the increased battery life it should see big gains there in it's next alliteration when it gets Haswell.

        I think I will get both. Sounds like the pro would be a good business tool and the RT might be handy/casual at house (kids and wife). Good info - much appreciated.

        slavrenz says:

        Saying that Surface RT is a pain because it's not full Windows is like saying the iPad is a pain because it's not full OS X. The fact that Microsoft even offers a full Windows tablet should be celebrated. Instead we're cursing its little brother...

        Rich Edmonds says:

        I meant the fact that it caused so much confusion with how RT was presented, not that it's a dumbed down version of W8. Updated the article slightly :-P

        _Emi_ says:

        well its a full windows 8 OS... the difference its it has a desktop locked down, which ANYONE can unlock with some weird methods.
        instead of people complaining about the lack of a "start button" i wish some people would have complained about a lack of switch to unlock the desktop.
        yeah its there, and it can be done. some apps (obviously usually few open source ones like 7zip) have been compiled for Windows RT, and they work fine after you unlock the desktop. also dosbox was shown to run in desktop RT.
        maybe if people asked for a switch like they stupidly did with Xbox One features, and "start button" then we would have it by 8.1.
        of course its never the best way to run external weird apps, but this method isnt so bad, and it comes from xda. http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2092158

        noirsoft says:

        The desktop on RT only exists to fill in the gaps until 8.1 moves all the settings to Metro UI and Office for Metro appears. Then I woudl bet cash money that the desktop on RT goes away completely.  It is closed because it is endangered and MS doesn't want people writing apps for an endangered UI.
        (note: I am not talking about desktop on full Win8, just RT)

        It's cheaper.
        It does more.
        It will last longer.

        The good parts of a PC...in a tablet.

        The Surface line.

        SwimSwim says:

        Sadly, the RT has its own line of problems, which will hopefully be addressed when the next generation model is released.

        Question: How is price genuinely comparable when Microsoft has had to slash a huge chunk of change off the Surface RT to try and move them? 
        To average consumers who've never heard of it, OK, it's cheaper. But it seems like an empty comparison?

        R0bR says:

        If Acer and friends didn't cry like little babies when RT was announced MS could have dropped the price from the beginning. Instead they kept their price inflated to not under cut OEMs.

        horbeme says:

        yes its cheaper but it has more storage, they will notice that also and multitask two screens instead of one. common sense with the price 16gb $500 or 32gb $350 that alone make sense now they will want to see what else it can do.

        phatboy66 says:

        If they could do an update to the Surface RT, I would totally buy it but right now the performance is really lacking. Had one before and returned it to the store.

        freshfelicio says:

        Windows RT 8.1 has enormous performance improvements. But I think they should remove the Desktop from RT completly, port Office to Metro, put all the settings in Metro and make a Metro Explorer. Then the difference between Windows 8 and Windows RT is clear.

        danielgray says:

        Downsides lack of apps, WP8 apps not running on tablet. Purchasing apps twice, once for phone and once for windows 8/RT.

        inteller says:

        there are actually too many apps.  The problem I have now is having to scroll through the list.  I have over 200 installed

        danielgray says:

        Wow too many apps, are they apps that are on IPad? App gap may be getting smaller for WP8 but is it for W8/RT?

        What a HEAD ACHE for windows haters they may get stroke very soon.

        icyrock1 says:

        ? I don't understand your statment. He makes a valid point. Developers should be able to make Windows phone 8 and windows RT compatiable apps in one (like iOS universal apps).

        noirsoft says:

        You can make Windows RT and Windows 8 compatible apps in one. Why do you want your phone & tablet to share apps when your tablet works more like a PC. Why not have your PC and tablet share apps? Apple does not offer "more" they just draw their dividing line in a different place.
        Apple: phone & tablet /// computer
        MS: phone /// tablet & computer

        danielgray says:

        Well would be nice to buy app once run on any Windows platform. Plus my phone is portable, tablet will probably travel with me too. Apps that also ran on tablet would mean that I don't have to look at 2 devices, I could just check the tablet. Would like things to sync like missed called, texts. Be nice also to be on Xbox/tablet, and be notified of incoming call or text. Microsoft could make a proper ecosystem that everything talked to each other.

        icyrock1 says:

         

          "You can make Windows RT and Windows 8 compatible apps in one. Why do you want your phone & tablet to share apps when your tablet works more like a PC. Why not have your PC and tablet share apps? "
           
          Because phones and tablets are meant to be portable, and thus I'd expect them to be able to share apps more than the tablet sharing apps with my PC (that's just me, though).
           
          The PC is stuck in a wall all day (except laptops) while Tablets and Phones are meant to be portable. It'd make more sence to have those apps be compatible. 

           

          fdruid says:

          I don't think it's fair to say that Windows RT "has been an absolute pain for consumers". There's bound to be disinformed consumers, but it's not the product's fault.
          I think it's pretty clear that the non-pro Surface doesn't run full Windows 8, but well.

          prlundberg says:

          0 to 100,000 in less than a year.  That's not bad at all.  Not to mention a PC-level browser and full OS that largely negate the need to install an app for every little thing you want to do. Half my Android apps installed simply aren't needed on my RT because it does it better natively.  File management, user profiles, printing, DLNA, Facebook, etc.

          qhendricks says:

          All anyone ever says is "Apps Apps Apps" without looking at the bigger picture. You do realize that since RT and Win8 in general just recently launched, that it hasn't had the same amount of time to get the number of apps that iOS and Android have, right? Unless you literally expect an equal number of apps to appear overnight - which would be completely unrealistic and naive. 
          Apple has had a LOONNNNG time to build up its app library for the iPad, so yes, of course they have more right now. But you can't knock Win8 for lack of apps just yet when it hasn't even been out for a year. And over 100k apps in that year isn't a bad start. 
          I remember when even Android had a paltry amount of apps. It takes time. And people like you just discounting the device as a whole for a sole reason such as apps only exacerbates the situation.

          Reeves says:

          It's not the amount of apps. It's the quality/big name of apps. 
           
          People "discount the device" because they buy tablets to use apps. Plain and simple. Oddly enough, some big Windows RT holes could be plugged by simply porting and slightly tweaking the WP8 version (e.g. Amazing Alex, Facebook) and vice versa (e.g. Nook, Comixology) but since the two operating systems are barely relkated and not compatible, Microsoft is just fighting the "app war" on more fronts than they have to.

          qhendricks says:

          If number wasn't a factor, then that wouldn't be peoples' arguments. When you ask any iOS or Android user why the chose those platforms over windows today, the average user is just going to say "More apps". The non windows people are simply pushing numbers, and people are believing it, without thinking that iOS and Android have their fare share of crappy apps.
          My point is, that in a year, it's hardly time to judge yet. As market share grows, so will the apps, including the big name ones. It's kind of a chicken and egg scenario. People won't buy it without the apps, but the apps won't come unless people buy it. Personally, I think the best thing MS can do is advertise the Surface's strengths, like it's doing in this video. They have to get people on the platform one way or another in order for the apps to come. The apps don't just get willed into existence, regardless of who makes them.
          You mention Facebook, but I don't see why there has to be an app for that. As another commenter mentioned, Windows RT can do that natively, in the built-in browser. Why use an app for it when you essentially already have it for free. This is a strength of the RT platform. Sure, they may not be an app, but you can do a majority of tasks natively without needing one.

          Reeves says:

          "More apps" are important. That being more apps....that they want. Instagram, Vine, whatever the latest addictive game is (e.g. Candy Crush Saga), etc. Android and iOS can have more than their fair share of crappy apps as long as they ALSO have the ones people want. You talk about there being no need for a Facebook app because of the integration, but that's simply not true if you're a power Facebook user. 

          Apps are a social thing these days. People want to be able to get on the bandwagon with the Draw Something craze or Candy Crush or whatever. Windows RT and/or Windows Phone 8 keeps getting these after the phenomenon has passed. That matters. Kickstands and putting two apps side-by-side...sure these are advantages to some people. but only a niche. Very few iPad owners are lamenting their inability to do these things. 

          Microsoft's slowness in getting these apps when they're relevant is hurting them. Heck, it's taking them almost a year just to do some updates for the barebones NATIVE apps on Windows RT. Forget third party apps...think about the mail or media experience on a Surface for someone coming from an iPad...it's a joke. The only content Microsoft is leveraging (poorly, I might add) is Xbox music. They should have a "Nook book/magazine" front and center in every commercial. Where are the Xbox games? Where's the TV or video content? Launching a tablet without these pioeces in place clearly explains the miserable showing of the Surface and other RT tablets.

          qhendricks says:

          The thing is, it comes across as resting entirely on MS's shoulders, when part of the blame partially rests on the developers of those apps as well. MS can't necessarily do anything but throw money around if a developer says "nope, only going Android, because reasons" even if that reason is just plain and simple platform bias.
          Most consumers won't know that, but it's true. In a consumer mind, MS makes all the apps and is responsible for the distribution of them. Developer stubbornness is hurting them at this point, because MS can't make a developer put the latest hot craze game out on all 3 platforms at once. It's not black/white like most people think.

          Reeves says:

          It is black and white when the whole point of replacing the Windows Phone 7 kernel with the new WP8 one was to be able to leverage Windows 8 license sales to entice developers to make apps that could easily be ported across all three platforms. Yet, now we have a couple of nascent competing app platforms with not a lot of overlap. 
          And again, Microsoft's own updating has been atrocious. It's great that they finally got Outlook into Windows 8.1. But the media apps still suck. Performance on a Tegra 3 is still lacking. This "one significant update a year" pace isn't going to cut it. 

          garak0410 says:

          I have to agree to a point. There is a large group of people out there who use smart phones and tablets just for apps, most of them mindless. Microsoft is going to have to target them somehow,. Yes, the app store has grown but still, people want their Candy Crush, or the new Minion Rush or Instagram. Heck, even a Facebook app is needed on RT just to make sharing much easier.

          i7Rei says:

          They forgot to compare the battery life. The only reason I wouldn't buy the Surface is because of their battery life. It's too short.

          R0bR says:

          8-9 hours is short?

          MacDaMachine says:

          Isn't Surface RT like 9hrs battery, with a 1.5hr charge time?

          Yes it is. A little research should help the other guy.

          fbendotti says:

          I own a surface rt. Ipad2, nexus 7. Since the 8.1 upgrade, it's a little buggy. The apps are getting better. The surface is so much better to use especially with office and split screens. IE 11 allows you to put 2 tabs up side by side. This is excellent for productivity. Fantastic tablet for 350. Although I was an early adopter and paid 500. I highly recommend the type keyboard.
          This is much better than the other tablets. Especially with the office and SkyDrive integration.
          It would definitely benefit from a notification center.

          inteller says:

          it is a real shame this was not the first commercial they released.  Hopefully this means they fired the producers of Glee who made their first stupid commercials.

          theefman says:

          These ads always miss the point why consumers actually buy ipads. The vast majority obviously arent looking to run Office, plug in usb ports and sd cards or attach printers so highlighting those features wont make RT devices any more appealing. All the regular consumer wants is apps, for every convievable function, until that is the case with RT it will continue to struggle, despite the more palatable price.

          Micropel says:

          I see where your coming from but I know hundreds of people who have app based tablets and still need to run and find a computer to use a USB to print.IMO apps are overrated and the young consumers knowledge base of technology is lacking heavily almost as much as the older folks

          garak0410 says:

          I agree but unless someone is tech savy or needs something for work, it IS about the Apps. Even the stupid ones. My 21 year old daughter wanted a Nokia 1020 but it didn't have some obscure app she wanted so she went with iPhone5. Microsoft is going to have to find a way to reach that crowd.

          Reeves says:

          Microsoft is telling a ridiculous story with Windows 8. They force a Metro interface across Windows RT, Windows Phone 8, and Windows RT, but the Windows Phone 8 apps can't run on Windows 8 or Windows RT and vice versa. Windows Phone 8 broke compatibility with 7 and created fragmentation because it was soooooo important that it have a new, shared kernel with Windows RT, which would make porting apps easy.

          Yet....Windows Phone 8 has no Nook app. It has no Comixology app. But Windows 8 does? Windows 8 has 50,000 apps according to the latest commercial, but WP8 has 170K or so. It's confusing and pointless.  

          This is why the Surface and Windows RT will continue to languish. I love my Lumia 920, but that's because Nokia has a focus and dedication to the platform that Microsoft lacks. I bought a Nook HD+ (which comes with an Office compatible suite) tablet NEW for $200 less than even the discounted Surface price. Even if I buy a case with an integrated Bluetooth keyboard, that's maybe another $40. To get the external keyboard for the Surface is yet another $100. The Nook HD+ has a way sharper and higher resolution screen than the Surface. It's only slightly smaller (9 inches vs. 10.6). It's thinner and lighter. SD slot too. Runs all the great Android games that Windows RT does not and won't have available. Easily switched over to vanilla Jelly Bean.

          Microsoft wants to aim at the iPad, but people who wanna buy an iPad are going to get...an iPad!!! They need to come up with a tablet value prop that competes with the Nexus 7s, Kindle Fire HDs and Nook HD+ devices. To do that, they need a coherent phone and tablet strategy. They don't have one. 

          Morq says:

          Great post, couldnt write it better myself.

          Micropel says:

          I love my surface rt. I don't understand how people can be confused no other tablet has a full os but the rt comes very close for a great price

          stemount says:

          If only MS just went 'Run whatever apps you want', I'd have it just for a second laptop. I don't want to upgrade to 8.1 (for the desktop features) and have M$ plug the jailbreak hole.
          The touch keyboard is terrible… definitely needs slashing to £49.99.

          jlzimmerman says:

          Touch is terrible? That's subjective per person.  I felt the touch keyboard was much better than I expected it to perform, based on what I had been hearing about it.

          TechsUK says:

          Windows RT was a hit and miss for me. Merely because the built in apps were under par. V1.0 very good all things considered. Stick with RT (naff name) Microsoft. Surface is brilliant. Office (now with Outlook in 8.1!) is superb.

          Cellus13 says:

          Someone on YouTube said "comparing yourself to apple won't change the fact that you only sold 1.3 million surfaces. Apparently people still think the ipad is better ;)". Yeah they're called isheep.

          Bright Chen says:

          Suggestion fellow Windows 8 fans: if you eva dared to venture forth into the comments section right below windows 8 vs ipad videos you will see a ton of trollers; the majority of them are hating out of this world. Flood back with me by offering logical yet sustained attacks against them!

          freshfelicio says:

          Bright Chen, lead the Windows Army to a glory victory!

          Camaroon says:

          They should've just called it Windows Lite instead of RT.  RT means nothing to people.  At least if they said it was the 'Lite' version of Windows maybe people would've understood better that it didn't have all the features of the full version.

          What a HEAD ACHE for windows haters they may get stroke very soon.

          Matt J says:

          I've had a Surface RT for exactly two weeks.  My wife and daugter have iPads, and the Surface RT really holds its own.  Sure, there is a lack of apps, but the user experience is much better and the extra screen real estate, combined with MS Office is really awesome.  HDMI and being able to print directly to my HP LaserJet is amazing.

          lsoneboy333 says:

          I got my rt the day it released and finally got rid of my laptop and now have a desktop. Having the surface and a laptop just felt redundant to me. Love my surface and will look forward to a V2.

          I love Windows RT, in my opinion it's the more pure form of Windows and where the ecosystem is going.

          txDrum says:

          Windows RT needs to be for devices below $250. Its like chrome OS. It looks nice, but the support isn't there. On the other hand, Silvermont based atom tablets will be hitting $2-300 and those do everything that winRT can do and more. Windows RT is effectively going to be priced out of the market by Intel, which is arguably what Microsoft made it for in the first place (make Intel step up their mobile game).

          I don't see any reason for winRT. If they cost similarly, would you rather have a surface RT or a surface 8 with an atom tablet, hitting similar if not better performance for the same price, or at worst $50 more? Then that leaves plenty of room for a surface at 10 inches with a higher clocked atom to truly compete with the iPad, and a surface pro with haswell for the best of everything.

          Reeves says:

          Yup. Any Bay Trail Atom tablet with a decent screen is going to smoke the Surface. It'd be ludicrous to still sell Surface RT devices for $350 when the same money will get you a way better machine in 4-5 months.

          Doctor Pork says:

          Well, when it comes to performance it depends on what kind of performance you are talkning about. When it comes to the CPU, it is very likely that Bay trail will be more powerful than the ARM alternatives, the big question is instead the power of the GPU as the Snapdragon 800 will bring huge improvements when it comes to GPU power compared to Tegra 3. NVIDIA has been bragging about significantly higher performance in graphics in the coming years too. Of course, intels current integrated graphics solutions for laptops are significantly more powerful than even the Ipad 4, but thus far the GPU on Atom chips has been lagging. Clover trail was certainly competitive when it comes to the CPU, but the GPU was barely on the level of Tegra 3 which was an old chip when Windows 8 tablets launched. Even if bay tral is significantly faster, it might still lag ARM in graphics.

          Not that I havepersonally  been wishing for more graphics power on my Asus Vivo tab, I don't game on it, so the only benefit would be support for higher resolutions, but at the moment 1366x768 has been fine for hybrids as a higher resolution just introduces scaling issues in desktop.

          Also, for some people it might be a feature that you can't run regular programs. Less toolbars that you can install and less risks when it comes to maleware. Sure, we who read this article might not agree, but if your grandmother just wants something to surf on the web with it might be a better choice. .

          Super2online says:

          Absolutely loving this. I wonder what its like for Apple to be on the receiving end of the fight this time. Microsoft took this for years before they responded, will Apple take as long?

          qhendricks says:

          I had always considered the old Mac vs PC ads pretty immature and unprofessional, but it seems it's come full circle for them. I'd be willing to bet that Apple is taking it in stride now - karma.

          crazygonzo says:

          Good ad, hopefully now Microsoft knows where they stand with Win8 & Surface so the price is a permanent adjustment. Bring the 2nd gen and we can get this show on the road.

          Joel H18 says:

          Who's going to give me the money to buy myself a surface? :D

          Where were these ads last Fall?  Other than the price, nothing in that ad wasn't true 10 months ago.
          Microsoft marketing is so unbelievably and pathetically inept.

          _Emi_ says:

          I found out Rob Powers have a surface! dont know what version.
          but guess he wanted a tablet that would let him show powerpoint with no problem. so its nice to see someone like him having a surface!
          Well at least he brought his Surface at NAB. but again its always good to see important persons and great people having a surface! and seeing the power on it.
          Cant wait for 8.1 because besides it improves 8.0, it will also launch important apps people want like Facebook, and hopefully since xbox one is released, we will see more and more game and important apps in store.

          b3rni3703 says:

          IN YO' FACE APPLE! lol

          Blkacesvf41 says:

          Again, the media is quick to point out that Microsoft is taking shots at the iPad, but a few years ago it was ok for apple to do the same with its iMac commercials.

          hethler says:

          I lol-ed when they left the iPad falls after the demo because lack of kickstand, hahaha! Subtle but very "in your face"! Hahaha!

          KrankyKoder says:

          I still like the older commercial...
          <siri_voice>I can't zoom like that! oww! oww!</siri_voice>
          And I love my Surface RT, my teenager loves his too. 8.1 will only make it better, I'm sure.
           
           

          pr0phecy says:

          The consumer is dumb. They don't complain about the iPad not being able to install 'legacy' Mac OS applications. I for one absolutely ADORE my Surface RT. I have it since release day and it's STILL kicking my ipad's face. I just don't use that thing anymore. Except for using it as an occasional paperweight. I'm not saying the iPad is bad, it had a good run, but for me personally, the Surface RT is sooo much more productive and a blessing to use! I absolutely love it. Too bad the 'dumb' consumer don't realize this.

          Reeves says:

          How is the consumer "dumb" when it's Microsoft who says that the Surface runs Windows as an OS and runs commercials showing apps moving between desktop to tablet to phone, when that is NOT the case?

          pr0phecy says:

          Dumb in the sense of not knowing the difference between RT and full Windows. It really isn't rocket science. It's not.

          Reeves says:

          It is dumb when RT essentially is the antithesis of the concept of "Windows" being that apps run full screen (yes, I know you can "snap" them to share a screen, but that's just an extra app.). The only reason "the desktop" exists in RT is to have a place for Office and the OTHER Internet Explorer (sheesh) to run. If they had Metro Office figured out prior to launch, the desktop would have no reason to exist.
           
          Apple wisely figured out that the workflow for mobile would be quite unlike desktop OSX, and so they branded iDevices in a way that clearly delineated what they did as opposed to what Macbooks and iMacs do.
           
          Microsoft just muddles the issue by saying "Well, this is Windows 8, except when it's on SOME tablets, and then it's Windows RT (what does RT stand for...who knows?), and then when it's on the phone, it's Windows Phone 8. Three different operating systems that run three different types of apps. So, anyway, the phone apps only run on the phone, but he tablet apps run on the tablet and the computer, but if you don't have a touchscreen computer, you'll probably spend more time on the desktop and......"
           
          You really expect consumers to parse that or else be labeled "dumb"? Microsoft's own reps in Microsoft stores often couldn't explain that! I was in one a couple of days after the Surface launch and heard it for myself.
           

          One more vote for the Surface RT. With Windows 8.1 it's a much better experience, but its not ready for general release yet, but I can't wait for the RTM version. I have absolutely no interest in owning an iPad, and I care more about battery life and weight than I do about running legacy apps, but I do want a USB port, office and a file manager. One thing I have never heard anyone bring up is that I'd rather get an app from the store which you know is curated than download some dodgy program from some dodgy site on the internet which at the very least will try to install some stupid toolbar or something. I have a desktop for my "real" computing, and I couldn't do without an x86, but if there is a store app that does what I want I'll get that in preference to a desktop program and then I can share it with the RT. Its funny how the people who like the Surface RT are mostly those who've owned one for a while. It doesn't seem like a lot of the critics have actually used one (not lately anyway).
          A final thought ... I hope they do intergrate Windows Phone and RT. I'd love being able to use snap multitasking on my phone for example. i was also very happy yesterday when MS brought its Bing apps like News to Windows Phone.

          Stadifer says:

          It's about damn time Microsoft started marketing the Surface RT for exactly what it is. Microsoft's decidedly superior answer to the Apple iPad. With the Windows App Store as of late making rapid progress in catching up with Android & Apple the argument that there aren't as many apps is disintegrating. 

           
          The biggest problem with Surface RT was Microsoft's really poor advertising/marketing of the device early on. The Surface RT is in virtually every way superior to the iPad. 

           
          It's nice to see Redmond become chic again vs. Cupertino. Be wary my friends; the plaid covered NW hipsters are coming back in to popular demand!

          Reeves says:

          You really think the biggest/main problem is marketing? Hoo boy.......

          dc9super80 says:

          Not the best device to do typical desktop computing activities (obvious limitations), neither the best device to do typical tablet computing activities (wrong form factor, lack of good apps, etc.,).  
          The Surface RT is no good.
          I do think the Pro is top notch though.

          Way I see both the RT and the PRO are crippled by their hardware.  The RT has a joke of a chipset and the PRO is overpowered for a tablet.  Rumor has it that a lot of the performance issues will be solved with the new Qualcomm 800 chipset.  So that's a major plus.  The PRO will more than likely run a Haswell which should radically increase battery life... I just wish they'd gone with an i3 as opposed to an i5.   Oh, and more storage... they need more of that for sure. 

          Gadgety says:

          Overpowered = Underenergized because of power consumption. If the Pro 2 comes with Haswell, Iris Pro 5200, 1TB SSD, and Thunderbolt with a similar physical size as today's offering, it'll be very hard to beat, providing Microsoft can stay within the right price envelope.