Remember computers? Of course you do. You’re using a computer now. Mac, PC, Android, iPhone or iPad, these are the computers and platforms that mankind knows, and for better or worse, use each day. They are computers. We are computer users.
Microsoft compares their new Surface PC computers to Apple’s iPad by telling the world that Surface is a ‘real computer.’ Sure it is. Notebook, hybrid, or desktop, we would agree that Surface PCs, are, well, computers. If Microsoft is married to the past, and we agree on what a computer is, then what about the generation of people who never use a computer?
Phone? Or, iPhone?
Long after the NFL switched from iPads on the sidelines to Microsoft Surface sponsored tablet-hybrids, television announcers and color commentators called them iPads. Nobody calls a tablet a computer, though it is. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says Apple is a “luxury goods manufacturer” and grumbles that people “need to get a real computer.” That luxury goods manufacturer wiped Microsoft’s mobile ambitions off the face of planet earth, the Mac’s sales continued to rise while Surface sales remain unknown, and Apple’s strategy seems to be doing well.
Apple responded to Microsoft’s anemic but high profile threat with a perspective born of the future in a daring video entitled iPad Pro – What’s A Computer – Apple:
This is an example of the new generation of computer users and they don’t know they’re using a computer. To those of this younger generation, a computer is what old people use. Everyone else uses an iPad or iPhone.
Let’s face it. Microsoft blew it. They’re still blowing it because the Surface, Windows, Office trinity is married to the past. Through a series of incompetent steps, Microsoft lost the mobile device generation to Apple and Google. The Mac might be an outlier because 2017 is the best Mac year ever, but the future is mobile, despite Microsoft’s attempts to take people back to the turn of the century when Windows ruled.
The children in our neighborhood here in Atlanta, suburbia at its best, think computers are for old people. Few teenagers even know how to type, but they can get an iPad or iPhone to transcribe anything in an instant. iPads and iPhones go everywhere that notebooks do not, and increasingly, these are the devices of choice.
Meanwhile, Microsoft tries in vain to move people into the past by stale old comparisons of Surface this vs. iPad that. Apple’s Mac sells at record levels, but iPad sells double the Mac, and we all know how well iPhone does.
Those are what old people use.
Microsoft would be better suited to getting people who use iPhones and iPads to see what can be done with Office on mobile devices.