Desperate Microsoft’s phony Surface Pro vs. Apple iPad Pro comparisons

“Microsoft recently announced an updated version of its Surface Pro line of tablet/notebook computer hybrids,” Ashraf Eassa writes for The Motley Fool. “Among other improvements, the new tablet line includes Intel’s seventh-generation Core processors, which offer significant performance and power efficiency improvements over the sixth-generation Core chips found in the previous Surface Pro 4 tablets.”

“Microsoft also couldn’t help comparing the performance of the new Surface Pro with Apple’s, claiming that it offers ‘1.7 times the compute of iPad Pro,'” Eassa writes. “Microsoft also said that the new Surface Pro delivers ‘35% more battery life than an iPad Pro.'”

“The reality is that Microsoft’s new Surface Pro isn’t going to be competing with Apple’s current 9.7-inch iPad Pro for most of its life in the marketplace. Instead, it will have to compete against the upcoming 10.5-inch iPad Pro that’s expected to launch at Apple’s upcoming World Wide Developers Conference next month,” Eassa writes. “The new iPad should include an all-new applications processor, which may be called the A10X Fusion… [along with a] new 10nm chip manufacturing technology, which should help boost efficiency. I suspect that the computing performance of the new Surface Pro will look a lot less impressive next to the upcoming new iPad Pro than it does against the current, aging iPad Pro models.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Microsoft. Always the last one to know that they’ve lost.

A “tablet” with an identity crisis is not the future… If Microsoft were really sure of themselves in Jobsian fashion, they would have devoted all of their efforts to Windows RT/ARM tablets… iPad will continue to offer the only known quantity in the market, the only true “tablet” with any real developer support, and the only one with a massive and vibrant ecosystem (both hardware and software).

Apple’s iPad is the only tablet into which any sane person or business would ever invest their hard-earned money. If your company ever buys Microsoft Surface tablets – either of them, but especially Windows 8 Pro/Intel ones – get your resume ready. You’re stuck at a place that’s prone to making horrendous decisions and is hopelessly mired in the past.

As if they needed it, Microsoft’s “Surface” debacle is even more good news for Apple.SteveJack, MacDailyNews, June 19, 2012

Microsoft’s hardware business takes a hit as Surface sales sag and Windows Phones fade – April 28, 2017
Fake news: Microsoft Surface vs. Apple iPad, Mac – April 28, 2017
Microsoft’s Surface Studio boondoggle – January 3, 2017
Apple’s new MacBook Pro outsold all other laptops in first five days – November 9, 2016
The debate is over: IBM confirms that Apple Macs are $535 less expensive than Windows PCs – October 20, 2016
A single quarter of iPad Pro sales will exceed the total of all Microsoft Surface tablets ever sold – November 24, 2015
Microsoft’s Suicide, er… ‘Surface’ – June 19, 2012


  1. Seems to me this has always been the case, and I’d throw Google and Samsung in the mix, too. Other companies almost seem to time their release cycles in this fashion intentionally in order to have boasting rights over Apple’s offerings from the previous year(s). It’s a shell game, to be sure. Inevitably those dubious advantages are erased relatively quickly, though the current Mac fiasco is an exception.

    1. Four years, Apple was its own best competitor. But then it stopped being so – and other companies stepped into the gap. Now Microsoft and HP, possibly even Acer, create what appeared to be really capable, thin and desirable computers.

      To be honest, those of us who want only to use OS X (or macOS) will always buy Apple computers. But we have been disappointed, of late, by Apple – its power and its prices. Increased competition from others can only be a good thing to drive Apple to be more responsive to all of us.

    2. The weight of the current model, the Surface Pro 4, is advertised as “less than 2lbs” with a battery life of “up to 13.5 hours of video playback.” It has a 42 Watt‐hour battery.

      The weight of the next generation Surface Pro is expected to be “1.69 pounds (766g) for m3, 1.73 pounds (786g) for i5/i7″ with 4.5 hours increased battery life due to the more efficient Kaby Lake processor from Intel.

      The 9.7″ iPad Pro (27.5 Watt‐hour rechargeable lithium‐polymer battery) is just under 1 lb. For the 12.9” iPad Pro (38.5 Watt‐hour rechargeable lithium‐polymer battery), the Wi-Fi model is 1.57 pounds (713 grams) and the Wi-Fi + Cellular model is 1.59 pounds (723 grams). 9.7‑inch iPad Pro. All iPad Pro models provide “up to 10 hours of surfing the web on Wi‐Fi, watching video, or listening to music.” Wi‐Fi + Cellular models provide “up to 9 hours of surfing the web using cellular data network.”

      I cannot speak to the real world battery performance of the Surface Pro 4. But the iPad consistently exceeds it rated battery life according to every article that I have ever read. And Apple has worked hard to ensure that battery life remains good for up to 1000 cycles.

      As MDN notes, the next generation Surface Pro with Kaby Lake is best compared to the next generation iPad Pro with the A10X SoC. Of course, we could also compare unit sales of the Surface Pro compared to the iPad Pro.

  2. In my mind, the bigger story is this.

    “1.7 times the compute of iPad Pro”

    A product currently shipping from Microsoft with an Intel processor only has 1.7 times the compute capacity as Apple’s non-Intel, last generation processor. Cue the macOS on ARM talk again, especially seeing the solution Microsoft came up with to execute a x386 written code on an ARM core. They’re not done yet, but what they have so far is impressive.

    1. You’re also missing the fact that the 1.7x claim is for their i7 spec, which starts at over 2x the price of the iPad and will certainly not come even close to 35% more battery life. Only the Core m3 spec is comparable in price, and that model is likely already slower than the aging iPad

  3. I don’t see the point of this comparison. The new Surface Pro is obviously aimed at dethroning Apple’s 12″ MacBook.

    As usual, Apple offers a one-size-fits-all proposition and charges a premium for old hardware that everyone _hopes_ may be corrected when someone reams out Timmy”s pipeline.
    But the competition is once again faster to deliver. If you want more than just a fashionista netbook, the Surface gives you plenty of options to choose the power and graphics you prefer, with a halfway decent OS. The iPad Pro — or any iPad — is inferior to any PC or Mac because of its hobbled OS.

    I wish someone was awake at Apple to deliver timely updates to Macs, and new Mac models to give users real choices at reasonable prices.

  4. An interesting thing has happened – Microsoft abandoned the cheap Surface (not pro) 3 and now caters only to the high end. The cheapest Surface device is $799.

    Apple has abandoned the 13″ iPad Pro (no update since its introduction) and Apple now owns the low-end $300 iPad market.

    The Surface Pro is no joke. It’s reasonably capable as a tablet yet able to handle any software. Having to buy 2 expensive devices to do mostly duplicative stuff is just dumb.

  5. If MS is going to compare a laptop to a tablet, then they should include iPads in PC market share numbers…but they won’t because that would bump Apple up the PC market share latter in a way PC trolls wouldn’t know how to deal with…

  6. its way way better then an iPad.. and more powerful then the 12 inch macbook.

    apple needs to drop the 12 inch to under $1000. $1500 fully loaded with the fastest core m chip (which are total garbage by the way)

  7. Microsoft is channeling Apple better than Apple is channeling Apple nowadays. Microsoft has dutifully studied old Apple presentations and recreated the feel of them. They’ve recreated the excitement and passion that Apple has lost. Sorry boys but I believe Microsoft’s strategy is winning. The Surface is not a joke and people seem to love them. I will consider one as my next computer.

  8. What a joke. Nice attempt to protect Apple’s flank by attempting to frighten people away from buying Surface and similar convertibles, but take it from a past iPad user that now uses an SP4 – it is an awesome machine. You’re stuck dreaming in the “BUT ITS NOT A TABLET!” world, when the rest of the world has woken up to the fact that they want to carry ONE fully capable, highly portable productivity machine without limitations on managing documents and business connectivity, and they don’t care about label arguments that miss the point entirely.

    Time to wake up MDN. There’s a reason iPad sales are significantly slipping QoQ and market share is increasingly going to portable, interactive convertibles.

    1. My hunch? Apple knows this though they can’t admit it, because it would mean they were wrong about the market trend. It’s exactly why they’re trying to position iPad as a “computer” with keyboard and stylus, 4 years after MS did.

      My prediction? Within a couple years, when they sense collateral damage will be minimized, they’ll release the “groundbreaking” new iPad that will essentially be a MacOS on a tablet) mouse, file system, etc – heck, they’re more than halfway there now with iOS), and devotees like MDN will herald their “ingenuity” and pretend MS never did it years earlier.

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