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Microsoft slams Apple tablets branding the iPad Pro a ‘companion device’ to hurt its workplace sales

Microsoft is looking to undermine the effectiveness of Apple’s tablets with a senior executive at the company claiming the iPad Pro cannot perform the tasks of a PC and tablet effectively, despite previous claims from Apple chief executive Tim Cook arguing the contrary.

Dan Laycock, a senior communications manager for Microsoft Surface, the company’s flagship tablet, slammed into Apple’s tablet, which was released in November claiming they will always be “companion devices” to other Apple devices.

The comment was made in response to an attack on PCs made by Tim Cook to the Telegraph last November.

He said that the 12-inch iPad Pro is a suitable workplace replacement for a PC: “I think if you’re looking at a PC, why would you buy a PC anymore? No really, why would you buy one?”

Microsoft and Apple, which are direct OS and hardware competitors, are clashing on the function vs form front with Laycock claiming there is a divergence in strategy from each company.

He said: “Microsoft really wants you to only carry one device for tablet and PC use.”

Laycock told Trusted Review that Apple’s attempt at introducing a stylus with its tablets was a bid to emulate the Microsoft Surface, which comes with a pen. He called this a “failed” endeavour.

Further condemning the iPad Pro, he said: “We don’t see it as a one-to-one comparison [with the Surface], because this is a full PC, you’re running full apps.”

Apple is targeting professionals with the iPad Pro as its tablet sales to casual consumers continue to slump after seven straight quarters of declining iPad sales globally.

The accusation that the iPad Pro is not a standalone device capable of the same productivity feats as the Surface could harm sales, with uptake reportedly tepid in China, a vital market. One analyst firm claimed only 49,000 units were activated in the month following its launch in the region.

With Surface sales on the rise, Apple is looking to build upon its user-friendly interface to up its professional kudos, by building industry-specific iOS apps with both Cisco and IBM.

Featured by The Drum