Bill Gates appeared on CNBC and spoke on various topics. Then he was asked about Microsoft's future in the tablet world and competing with the current king of tablets, the iPad. The retired Microsoft boss seemed to have not been paying attention to what's actually offered with the Surface Pro and Surface RT in his claim that iPad owners are frustrated by the Apple tablet.
Gates should have done his homework before making claims that clearly aren't true. When speaking about Surface Pro and Surface RT he fails to mention, or possibly doesn't know, some of the Surface Pro and Surface RT shortcomings. Those reasons might make Bill Gates understand what the reality is in the tablet world, and not what he claims it is.
He says in the interview:
"Windows 8 really is revolutionary in that it takes the benefits from the tablets and benefits a PC and supports both of those. So, if you have Surface Pro or Surface (RT) you've got that portability, the richness of the keyboard and Microsoft Office of the PC."
While you can add keyboards to both the Surface Pro and Surface RT, you'll need to pay for them separately. The Surface RT runs a stripped-down variant of Windows 8 that does not support full Windows 8 desktop apps, but it does ship with Microsoft Office for Windows RT. But Microsoft made the foolish mistake of not including Outlook, which many users expected when buying a Surface RT. The Surface Pro ships running the full version of Windows 8, but you'll also need to buy a separate keyboard if you want to type on the tablet.
Microsoft has also decided not to include Microsoft Office with the Surface Pro as it did with the Surface RT, which will add another cost when purchasing the $899 32GB tablet. Microsoft faced another major criticism due to shipping both the Surface Pro and Surface RT with less than expected available storage. The 64GB Surface Pro only comes with 23GB of available storage, while the 32 GB Surface RT ships with close to 16GB of available storage.
Bill Gates went on to talk about how iPad users are frustrated with their iPads:
"But a lot of those users are frustrated, they can't type, they can't create documents, they don't have Office there, so we're providing them something with the benefits they've seen that have made that a big category without giving up what they expect in a PC."
Let's set Bill Gates straight. If iPad users were really as frustrated as he claims, would Apple be selling millions of iPads, while the Surface Pro and Surface RT have not sold millions, and are considered a failure?
iPad users also get more storage compared to the Surface RT. The 64GB iPad ships with 58.12 available for the user. iPad users can also type with many different keyboards on the market for the iPad, and not have to spend $119.99 for a Touch Cover or $129.99 for a Type Cover, which Microsoft would be smart to include in the box, since it advertises both tablets using a cover. Of course, the Surface Pro and Surface RT can use cheaper Bluetooth keyboards compared to Microsoft's expensive offerings. iPad users also have many excellent office applications to choose from in the App Store, and they don't cost anywhere near the price Microsoft charges for Microsoft Office.
Bill Gates needs to get up to speed with what's actually going on in the mobile world; but we'll give him a break since he is retired.