What. The. Fuck. Microsoft.

So, with the Surface Pro you can… dance?

  • If there were a dictionary entry for “Trying way too hard to be cool”…

  • Well, you certainly can’t get anything of importance done, so you might as well dance.

    • BC2009

      I got to play with my friend’s Surface Pro this weekend and it is as functional as any ultra book with one exception: no way to use it on your lap. That’s a pretty small problem for Microsoft to hurdle if they plan on offering the first decent alternative to the MacBook Air.

      If Microsoft positions this head-on with MacBook Air rather than iPad and provide a keyboard that offers lap usage then they will have the first functional convertible. It still will NOT be the best tablet experience, but they are close enough to ultra-book experience (all they are missing is a hinge) that it could be a great ultra-book with a compromised tablet experience rather than a compromised ultra-book and compromised tablet experience.

      • lucascott

        “and it is as functional as any ultra book with one exception: no way to use it on your lap.”

        given that they are hyping this as ‘in tablet form’ I’d say that it’s not a small problem but a medium or even large one.

        • JohnDoey

          Saying that a Surface Pro is just as functional as a laptop except cannot go in your lap is one of the stupidest things I ever heard. Laptops are made to put computing in your lap, on a couch, airplane, a seat at the airport, in an audience at a tech show, wherever you can sit but you don’t have a desk. Tht is the #1 function of LAPtops. Surface Pro requires a desk. It is a tiny portable desktop, just like the original Mac, which also ran Microsoft Office with a mouse cursor.

          Surface Pro has the functionality of a Surface Pro. No hiding it. You better be desk-bound and not need a real tablet.

      • Touché. And once people start loading Linux distributions it will become less compromised. Working in retail, Windows 8 in general has killed our computer sales. Microsoft needs to stop trying to reinvent the wheel, but rather refine it.

        • BC2009

          If I got to pick a winner among Apple’s major competitors over the next decade I would want Microsoft to be playing opposite Apple in the consumer electronics / home computing market.

          While not my current choice, if I ever were to pick an alternative to Apple for my home platform, I would rather it came from Microsoft than Google. I think Microsoft’s innovations with things like Kinect show some promise, but mostly because Google gets too deep into my personal information for my comfort. Google Now is just creepy.

        • JohnDoey

          Apple sold 50 million iPads last quarter. Do you think there are 50 million Linux users out there who will buy Surface Pro? Do you think there are 50 million Windows users who will buy Surface Pro?

          What Microsoft needs to do is focus on Exchange and other software that they sell to businesses, who are their only customers.

          • Oh, I wasn’t saying that Surface in general will begin to even scratch iPad, which I believe is a far superior product to what MS is trying to bring to the game. I was simply saying that, in my eyes, the only way that Surface would be worth anything is with different software, i.e. a Linux distro. To me, that would still be a novelty more than anything else, but I think MS is proving that they are rather inept at software design currently.

      • JohnDoey

        Surface Pro is not an alternative to MacBook Air. It is an alternative to iPad with Retina Display. Surface RT is an alternative to iPad mini. The Surface lineup has nothing to do with the Mac, except for the fact that the Surface Commercials were likely made on Macs like almost all other audio video.

  • GTWilson

    Eventually, you reach the point where you have to shake your head and walk away.

    • I did that after the first commercial! Where can I go from there?

  • All this tells me is “drugs”.

  • It’s a BSOD orgy

  • Ventzi Zhechev

    Try watching the video with the sound off. It’s creepy! Looks like a full blown alien invasion…

    • pawhite524

      Agree 100%. IMO, the only way to watch a commercial is with the sound off completely. That way you get the “real” message of the commercial. I am confident in stating 80 to 90% of all commercials have a disconnect between the visual message and the aural (audio) message. Psychologists and other non-verbal communication experts all agree that communication is anywhere from 66% to 80% non-verbal and has its own name, metacommunication. Most TV commercials, IMHO, should be radio commercials because of this disconnect. And this disconnect has its own name: Creepy.

  • gjgustav

    So, the iPad, whose commercials show actual work being done, it for content consumption, while the Surface, which shows people dancing, is for productivity. Got it.

    • That’s right, Apple is the hippy that got a girl pregnant, cut his hair and started wearing a suit.

      Microsoft is a guidance councilor wearing a baseball hat sideways and trying to rap.

      • Worse. Microsoft is the businessman in his midlife crisis.

        • There is a bit of the “leave wife & kids, buy corvette, start tanning” vibe going on. So many people just want Office.

          • JohnDoey

            Most people who use Microsoft Office absolutely hate it. What people want is to do more ad better work in less time with less technical overhead, less device weight, with longer battery life, no viruses, and great apps.

      • This and Joe’s comment just made my day. Both true, and then the CEO of Microsoft is the crazy chimpanzee at the zoo.

  • “So, with the Surface Pro you can… dance?”

    Well, those folks in the commercial can. I’ll bet none of the apologist nerds currently gushing about Surface in public comment threads are any good at it, though.

  • Ah. I understand now. This is a REAL computer, not a toy like the iPad. Upgrade the office!

  • I’m not sure which depiction is less realistic: everyone breaking into a coordinated dance number, or quick-tapping those tiny spreadsheet cells with any degree of accuracy.

  • I mean, I love weird commercials, David Lynch and impressive choreography as much as anyone.

    But, Microsoft. You. Have. To. Stop. This.

  • This is a sign of a company mad.

    • yummyyummyfly

      Whom the Gods will destroy, they first make mad…

    • “This must be what going insane feels like.” – Simon Tam, Firefly.

  • I posted this video I saw at the movies, it’s a behind the scene look of the first Surface commercial; by the looks of who they hired to do these commercials…I’m not surprised at how they came out http://t.co/Ag2H5H1M

  • Arnold Ziffel

    WTF is right! Keep it up, Steve. We like your strategy – we like it a lot.

  • Clearly for the Asian market…

  • GTWilson

    I’m still trying to figure out how one could dance holding a tablet with USB memory sticks and external battery packs dangling off it. You’re only going to get a slow waltz at best.

  • Devil’s advocate: they are trying to communicate several different things here which is loosing the overall message. But it might be enough to get consumers to go into BestBuy and take a look; and it might plant a seed for some people that they need USB connectivity and a stylus.

    Granted, probably won’t work for the masses who want something simple and reliable and will opt for the iPad anyway.

    • lucascott

      “they are trying to communicate several different things here which is loosing the overall message. “

      trying to communicate several different things while losing the overall. hmmm, sounds a bit like ‘trying to make every possible group of users happy while making something that lacks in overall quality’

    • JohnDoey

      If you want USB connectivity and a stylus, you do this:

      • iPad mini $329
      • Pogo Stylus for iPad $14
      • Apple Camera Connection Kit for iPad (USB/SD) $29

      … in fact, you can get the above for 3 users for less than just 1 Surface Pro. And iPad has more, better, and cheaper software.

      Hardly anybody cares about USB or stylus, though. There are about 100,000 accessories that just plug into iPad/iPhone directly and always just work, and you can paint and draw very fine lines with a finger on iPad.

  • nienque

    So the font at 0:57… to my amateur eyes that looks a lot like the font Apple uses for product names in ads. Even if it’s not actually the same font, I am sure I am not the only person watching this commercial to (subconsciously) think of Apple.

  • quietstorms

    It certainly feels like every conference room I’ve ever been in…

  • KFeltenberger

    So what does the damned thing actually do for me? Why should I buy it? And how is it better? Show me, don’t insult my intelligence, MSFT.

    • BC2009

      Until they figure out how to make it usable on your lap it is way too compromised as an ultra-book and due to size, weight, aspect ratio and battery life, it is way too compromised as a tablet. Microsoft needs to embrace the “ultra-book” side of it, go head-on with MacBook Air, and market the “tablet” aspect of it as a bonus.

  • BC2009

    While I’m not going to buy a Surface Pro, I can see what their message is here: work and play.

    This actually plays out better than their last commercial because it delivers that message that Microsoft has been harping on.

    Personally, I think Apple is not spending enough on marketing their products right now. Microsoft and Samsung are flooding advertising channels and Apple is kinda just kicking back. I’m not saying I want an Apple commercial with folks dancing like this, but I would like to see more Apple commercials as a stock holder.

    • Apple doesn’t need anything other than “reminder” commercials until the next new device comes out. Their ads are in the real world, look around and you’ll see them actually being used. Microsoft and Samsung need to do the work to show they offer something beyond an iPad…

      • BC2009

        I think Samsung’s $4B in marketing is actually getting them a lot of traction. They have put just about every other Android maker out of business without even mentioning “Android” in their commercials. Samsung is the only Android manufacturer to turn a profit. Their most recent commercials have transitioned from “Apple envy” to more main-stream celebrity endorsements (Lebron commercials).

        Even the press has now decided that Samsung is “the” competitor to Apple.

        Technologically, I think Microsoft has a serious advantage in software over Samsung, but they are still losing “mind share” while Samsung is gaining it.

        • JohnDoey

          Microsoft has more software than Samsung, but Microsoft has almost no hardware, and most of what they have is totally obsolete. Also, Microsoft welded their software to Intel and has almost no presence on ARM, which is shipping many times more units than Intel.

          Microsoft’s only successful mobile product is Exchange, which they license to other companies, including Apple. I don’t see any consumer future for Microsoft. Consider that iPod touch by itself outsells all 3 consoles put together. More iPads were sold in 2012 than Xbox has sold lifetime.

    • lucascott

      except that they aren’t really showing an work. Just folks in suits playing. and not even on their Surface for the most part. they are just flinging it out.

      • JohnDoey

        The primary function of Surface according to the 2 commercials and the Microsoft introduction event is as a noisemaker. You clap it together to celebrate New Year or your birthday.

    • TechManMike

      The problem with what you’re saying is that technically speaking the Surface “PRO” is supposed to be for Pro users who need more than what you get on the RT, AND more than what you can do with an iPad per what MS is saying. It’s supposed to be for the users who are all work…otherwise why not just buy an RT? MS may be throwing a lot of money at marketing but I believe that their whole philosophy is flawed in that they are confused about the purpose of their own products. That confusion shows in their marketing….

      • JohnDoey

        Their problem is that Windows ASP is $400, and all the pro users are on Macs.

        Gartner are longtime Windows-specific I-T analysts, and they recently declared “(Apple) Prohibition is Over” because the top 15% of business users (so-called power users) that they track were all on Macs. In the past, they would recommend whatever their power users used to the rest of the users, a couple of years after. Today, that is Apple gear.

        So Microsoft is saying “come pay Mac prices for a system with viruses and no Unix.” They are asking for more than 2x what a Windows system sells for. That is not going to fly. So Surface Pro is actually for Windows enthusiasts. That is why the commercial is targeted at enthusiasts. It’s a celebration of Windows!

    • JohnDoey

      That is because Apple’s #1 problem is too much demand — they keep increasing the number of units that they make of each product as fast as they can, but demand increases even faster. They do not need to stimulate demand like Microsoft and Samsung.

  • …and you can be that douchebag that walks around with the bluetooth in your ear even when not on a call.

  • lucascott

    So far the most effective ad I’ve seen for the Surface is the product placement in Elementary

  • yummyyummyfly

    I’m getting more and more convinced that P.Thurrott is the secret mastermind behind the design and marketing of the Surface. If you study his blog posts carefully, you could come away with the distinct impression that his horrible ideas about Microsoft and its competition are the principal reason for Microsoft’s decade long decline into eventual oblivion.

  • hifly

    It’s only meant to do two things – be entertaining and connect that with the name surface pro – it manages both. I wouldn’t touch one myself but I have had many friends who were on the cusp of buying an iPad ask me if they should get a Surface instead. These are people who use PCs at home but were buying at least partway into the Apple ecosystem (usually iPhones) – and if they’re close to purchasing an iPad but are now considering alternatives (whether Surface or some Samsung product) because of ads they’ve seen, that’s not good for Apple – it means encroachment on Apple’s mindshare. Apple’s recent ads focus on iOS functionality, but honestly their new generation of ads are neither eye-catching nor very humorous or entertaining. I’m hoping they’re planning to remedy that sooner rather than later.

    • JohnDoey

      Surface is great for Apple. Also Windows 8. The biggest problem iPad has is convincing people it is a PC. Microsoft turning Windows into a tablet system educates consumers that iPad is simply a next-generation touch PC, like Windows wants to be in maybe 5 years.

      Apple sold 50 million iPads last quarter at about $500 each. Microsoft sold about 75 million PC’s at about $400. Surface will not make a difference at all. It has not even sold a million units after 2 quarters. It is irrelevant except that its crapulence drives consumers to iPad.

      Even the diehard Windows user will most often choose a $400 Windows system and $329 iPad over a $1000 Surface.

  • Morgan

    Maybe Balmer pines to turn Microsoft into a hip Dance Studio. This is the second Dance commercial from Microsoft. Maybe Balmer will finally show us his moves at MSs next product announcement. The thought makes me cringe with anticipation.

  • Gizzy

    It reminds me of the avente-garde Mr. Plow commercial Homer had made.

  • Ohmybrain

    I am not a MSFT fan but this is the first interesting thing I have seen come out of their ad agencies. No beards, but still creative.

    • JohnDoey

      It is well-produced, but did you buy a Surface Pro?

  • My favourite part of this campaign is that it is hinged (pun intended) on the sound that the touch cover / type cover / whatever the hell it is makes when connecting magnetically to the Surface.

    You know, the sound that the Apple Smart Cover makes when connecting magnetically to the iPad, and has made for a couple of years.

    • JohnDoey

      I have a friend who thought the Surface RT commercial was for iPads. She goes, “that reminds me, I gotta get one of those Smart Covers for my iPad.”

  • rb763

    I guess they felt the angry schoolgirls would not be appropriate for a business computer ad.

  • Things to write on the cast of your broken leg, … “Did you see me doing this totally hip move with my spreadsheets and this piece of hardware – which totally DID work two dance attempts ago!”

  • Anthony 

    Da fuck did I just watch?

  • I love this. They show things you can do with the Surface and make it fun.

    • JohnDoey

      You mean clap it together and dance around with it?

      iPad commercials show fun apps and accessories you can USE on iPad.

      • Nope, it showed the stylus in use, on-screen keypad, touch cover, some apps, etc. I only watched it once and noticed all of that.

        iPad commercials aren’t the way to market. It is one way Apple uses effectively. The bouncing iPod videos were a far cry from “show[ing] fun apps” or how to use it.

        Apple’s way isn’t the rule.

        • They showed pretty pictures on tablet screens. Very briefly. Not a lot of functionality. I wish they’d done something more substantial.

          • I’m not sure why the crowd here expects Microsoft/et al to do everything like Apple or every commercial HAS to be instructional. Commercials should invoke emotion and this one invokes fun, for me, and that’s perfectly fine.

            Did it convince me to buy one? Nope but I’m not a normal consumer either.

          • I don’t expect Microsoft to duplicate Apple’s campaign. I do expect them to show me — as a consumer — why I might want to consider buying their product.

          • I showed it to my wife (without prompt or explanation/back story) and her response: “I like it. (sits back) They didn’t show much of what it does. (pauses, sits back more…slight frown) They didn’t show much of what it does. They showed some things but not much.”

            So…that’s a non-techie perspective. 🙂

          • This is what I’m saying. The non-techie consumer perspective is something I try to keep in mind. It covers many more opinions than my own.

            I think this is something more of us should try to keep in mind when we talk about consumer tech.

          • I try to do the same but obviously I was wrong. 😀

  • JohnDoey

    What do regular consumers think about the stylus? It looks ridiculous.

    • When my wife saw the Note and Galaxy 10 w/ a stylus she was in awe/excited. She hasn’t seen this commercial but when she does I’ll post her thoughts on it (without me prompting her, of course).

      • My fiancee is considering a Note, also, because of the stylus. I don’t know about the Surface, but I do know the Note is at least marketed as having more precise stylus use than an iPad with a third-party stylus gets. That still isn’t enough to get me to buy it over an iPad (and I like to sketch and doodle), but for someone who isn’t into the whole Apple scene (or maybe is just a hater), it gives them an alternative.

        Hopefully she’ll get an iPad, though. I’ve dealt with multiple OSes and multiplatform networks my whole IT life, but I’d like to be able to do some iPad-to-iPad games and apps and things. 🙂

        • normm

          You can get fancy pressure-sensitive styluses for the iPad from third parties. Look at “Pogo Connect”, “Jot Touch” and “Jaja Stylus”. $60-$100. Fine lines, pressure sensitivity, and palm rejection.

          • Thanks, normm. I had heard of the Jot but not the others. I’ll do some research on them and pass them on to her.

        • Yeah, I can’t do a Note either. A friend is AMPED about getting his Note though. He wanted the iPhone until he read reviews on Sprint then played with both at Fry’s Electronics and was sold on the Note.

          My wife has a stylus for her iPad that she NEVER uses. lol. She’s not an artist of any sort though so it was a waste of a gift. 🙂

  • CJ

    Could NOT make it all the way through that pointless ad. What a bizarre, soulless company..like my uncle is running it or something.

  • fuckMicrosoftandApple

    I wish… Oh how I wish Microsoft would make programs that stop changing settings on its own. like the position of EVERYTHING in Word

  • Jim Mc

    Oh my God, this is truly pathetic.

  • dr who

    A pathetic commercial from a pathetic company.