Microsoft targets iPad Mini by highlighting an awful Windows 8 tablet

Microsoft has released another advertisement that takes a stab at the tablets from Cupertino. Yesterday, the company released a new spot that showed why the Surface RT was superior to the iPad 4 and today we have the iPad Mini going up against the Acer Iconia W3.

The commercial, like all of the ones before it, highlights the shortcomings of iOS and how the Windows equivalent bests the device in nearly every way, including price.

While it is great to see Microsoft going after all of Apple’s tablets, the choice to highlight the Acer Iconia W3 tablet may have been a poor representation as reviews of the tablet have been anything but pleasant; most of the complaints revolve around the awful display.

Sure, it’s great that the device is priced well below that of the iPad Mini but Microsoft may have been better off waiting a bit to highlight a tablet that is worthy to compete against the iPad Mini because if a consumer goes to compare these two devices side-by-side, the iPad Mini, while offering fewer software features, does best the W3 in terms being an all-around better device.

In fact, when the device first came out, Neowin got it’s hands all over the W3 and had this to say about the device:

Frankly, the W3 hasn't made a particularly positive impression here. The need to pursue affordability is certainly understandable, but given how much Apple has been able to achieve in the lighter, similarly-priced iPad mini, we're not sure whether Acer has enough to make a strong case for the W3 here.

We expect that Microsoft will likely target the iPad Mini in the future with other tablets as well, likely the upcoming Surface Mini, and this will only be the first of many to bash the small tablet. But, if consumers do head for the W3 and that’s their first experience with Windows 8, it may leave a bad impression.

Source: YouTube

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Yay I want real office on a tablet so bad! I'll be able to do all my reports from the tablet then, that should be fun. And the outlook app looks soooooo touch friendly!

And how hard is it to add a USB mouse? Every Windows 8 (or RT, for that matter) device - regardless of form-factor - supports them, and supports them directly, if you need them. (Logitech's V220 Cordless and the direct clones thereof are fantastic for any GUI, and you don't need specialized drivers for any OS - if the OS supports pointing devices at all, it will work. You can even use it with an iPad, let alone any Android tablet. Even better, they aren't expensive in the slightest.)

That ad is so dumb. There are thousands of great games for the iPad to the one or two good game for windows 8 RT plus you can get Microsoft office now for iOS now.

Anthony Muscat said,
That ad is so dumb. There are thousands of great games for the iPad to the one or two good game for windows 8 RT plus you can get Microsoft office now for iOS now.
Well you are 1/2 right. Yes the iPad has more games, the vast majority just being remakes of stuff I played in the 80's or they are copies of stuff already in the app store with different name.

Microsoft Office Mobile is not the same as Microsoft Office. You need to look it up. In fact go to a Best Buy or any phone store that has a Windows Phone and load up Microsoft Office and you will see exactly what the iPad is going to get. The above tablet comes with a desktop versions of Microsoft Office, not a stripped down editor.

Those of us who know tech know this commercial is way off base, but the average consumer won't know that the Acer is junk. I don't really care for the Siri voice though as I find Siri annoying, why would I want to watch a commercial with that voice?
Also the last remark she makes "Don't read that" I suppose makes sense that Siri doesn't want you to read it, but seems to tell the consumer as well not to read it, like we are supposed to ignore it.
I think it is one of the worst Siri-Apple comparo videos.

lmaobox said,
Hello, I'm Windows Tablet and I can run Office, Outlook and some apps you have seen on Android in 2009.

some apps seen on android in 2009 like flash player? Which no longer works on android (and never really worked fine on android).

lmaobox said,
I wouldn't really switch to Windows platform just so I could play flashgames on Facebook.

never played any flash game. Yet if I use a web browser with flash disabled, I will miss a lot of content, like embedded videos/pictures gallery on many sites.
sometimes whole websites are in flash, and almost every video on demand web site use flash for videos because html5 has no widespread support for drms.

lmaobox said,
Hello, I'm Windows Tablet and I can run Office, Outlook and some apps you have seen on Android in 2009.

Windows RT Tablet does not support xlsm

Yeah that's the brilliant part about all those videos: Microsoft demoing how Windows 8/RT lacks Siri-like functionality.

glen8 said,
regarding the video, why isn't the windows 8 tablet talking?

How come we can only hear siri?

because people often make fun about siri due to the fact it is ridiculously useless. So does Microsoft.

apple has toys features like siri, while Microsoft has real features that allow people to do thing they couldn't do on an iPad. That's the point of this series of ads.

link8506 said,

because people often make fun about siri due to the fact it is ridiculously useless. So does Microsoft.

apple has toys features like siri, while Microsoft has real features that allow people to do thing they couldn't do on an iPad. That's the point of this series of ads.

Interesting point of view

If I say to an iPad/iPhone "How do I drive to London" it maps a route and opens up the navigation. Nothing on a par like Android, that's just scary good.

If I'm driving, I can say "Phone work" without having a fumble about going through contacts to find works number.

somethings are handy to have

They should have waited until they released their Surface Version or until someone released a decent "mini" sized tablet. I've used a W3 in store and while the tablet itself is ok, the screen is pretty horrible.

Figure 8 Dash said,
The W3 really does have the worst screen of any device ever.

yet it has a better resolution than the ipad mini...

1280x800 for the w3 VS 1024x768 for the iPad mini

since the iPad mini costs 50% more money than the w3, it's obviously the build quality isn't the same.

by the way, I've seen screen quality that is much worst on sub $200 android tablets (I know the w3 is more expensive, but it come with much better capabilities)

Here we go again. There is nothing wrong with that Acer. Its not comparing build quality, its comparing what you can do for more than $100 less. Can an iPad play Halo? Sure it could, but it doesn't. Can an iPad use Office? Sure it can, but it doesn't. All I see is comments on about how cheap the tablet is. Well DUH...what do you expect for under $300.

Show us a tablet under $300 that isn't a POS? Oh that's right...YOU CAN'T. At least not one that runs Windows.

Microsoft made their point. It just shows an iPad Mini that costs more than this cheap option still can't do any of this yet it cost more. This was the point of the ad which all the bozos here seemed to have missed.

If you don't understand the ad, why comment on it.

I got an iPad Mini for 329$ 16GB which is equal to Windows 8 Tablet 64GB

iPad Mini:
Screen = wow
Graphics = wow
Thin = wow
Light = wow
Apps and games = wow

john.smith_2084 said,
I got an iPad Mini for 329$ 16GB which is equal to Windows 8 Tablet 64GB

iPad Mini:
Screen = wow
Graphics = wow
Thin = wow
Light = wow
Apps and games = wow

ah yes, but you cant install security updates every week on an ipad can you! Then if you factory reset you have the joy of installing them all again!

Try doing that on an ipad. When you factory reset that, it's already up to date WTF!

glen8 said,

ah yes, but you cant install security updates every week on an ipad can you! Then if you factory reset you have the joy of installing them all again!

Try doing that on an ipad. When you factory reset that, it's already up to date WTF!

looks like you need to do a factory reset every week on your iPad.

on the other hand, I don't know any windows RT users who had to do a factory reset ...

BTW: security updates are once per month, not once per week. And since when security is a bad thing?

do you think it's actually better to stop receiving security updates after a few years?

do iPad 1 users enjoy the benefits of having an out of date OS that do no longer get security updates or features updates after only 2 years? What will they do if someone decides to exploit flaws in safari or the builtin pdf reader like that already happened in the past with jailbreakme?

by comparison, every windows RT/8 devices will receive security updates for 10years

funny how stupid people manage to make that benefit look like a bad thing.

I'll surely use a tablet for 10 years. /s
Not even 4 years man.
A BMW vs a Fiat. Both get you in the same place but the Fiat uses less gas whereas the other provides comfort/price - iPaid vs Windows Tablet.
The price looks good though.

deadheadline said,
I'll surely use a tablet for 10 years. /s
Not even 4 years man.
A BMW vs a Fiat. Both get you in the same place but the Fiat uses less gas whereas the other provides comfort/price - iPaid vs Windows Tablet.
The price looks good though.

considering the amount of people who are still using 5+ years old computers, I'm pretty sure people won't change their tablet every 2 years. Most people just want to use Facebook and youtube on the couch. As long as their tablet will work, they won't replace it. And if it runs an OS that is unsupported, sooner or later there will be security troubles (botnets,...).

john.smith_2084 said,
I got an iPad Mini for 329$ 16GB which is equal to Windows 8 Tablet 64GB

iPad Mini:
Screen = wow
Graphics = wow
Thin = wow
Light = wow
Apps and games = wow

What about...
Connection to external devices = Not so much
Run Full MS Office and Other Desktop Applications = Not so much
Connection to Wireless Printers using protocols other than AIR = Not so Much
File Management = Nope
Copy files directly to the device = Oops nope!
Customizing OS for personal liking = Uhhh Sorry
The list goes on.

Also, if you remove the pre-installed copy of Office and remove the recovery partition form a windows 8 64 GB machine, it has twice the space remaining of an ipad mini completely stripped of it's OS and all of it's software.

Leave the windows 64GB pc with all software installed and it still has 7GB more than your 16GB mini stripped of it's OS an apps. Just Saying, they are not equal don't over simplify.

john.smith_2084 said,
I got an iPad Mini for 329$ 16GB which is equal to Windows 8 Tablet 64GB

iPad Mini:
Screen = wow
Graphics = wow
Thin = wow
Light = wow
Apps and games = wow

Can I ask a stupid question? You do have eyes...right? They also work or you at least have glasses or contacts if they don't...right?

The iPad Mini vs Acer Iconia W3

Screen - 1024x768 vs 1280x800
Screen - 1024x768 vs 1280x800
Size 7.87 x 5.30 x 0.28 inches (200 x 134.7 x 7.2 mm) vs 0.45"H x 8.62"W x 5.31"D, 1.1 lbs.
So what really is the wow factor about the iPad? The Mini uses the iPad apps bec it has the same aspect ratio and OS and resolution.

With an iPad you need an app for almost everything. This ATOM is faster than the ARM CPU, has expandible storage, USB that can use external drives, keyboards and mice, the iPad cannot. The Windows tablet supports file transfer over BT which is a native function of the hardware that Apple simply locked down. You can install many if not all your desktop apps which you cant on a iPad Mini. Office is simply a huge plus as the Mobile version of Office for iPad is nothing more than a stripped down editor which means productivity is still something foreign to iOS devices.

For 299 you get a full version of Windows 8, not RT not Pro, but basic Windows 8. supports all of Windows applications and games, tho I would advise against high end games, but since the resolution is lower many could do well. I mean it will play Halo.

iPad requires expesive dongles to connect a USB or card reader, not need with the above tablet.

No open file system on that iPad, no support for Flash, poor support for HTML, no support for GPU acceleration, and I could list 25 more things that iPad wont be able to do that the Windows one can. But all the fans frown on build quality. Any tablet that is about $300 with real hardware inside isnt going to be as fresh looking as the iPad Mini.

The ATOM CPU costs more than a ARM CPU. Does more too. Runs more powerful apps like it can run a full version of Photoshop which the iPad cannot.

The iPad hasnt had a wow factor since its original release. No new real features. Same 20 year old OS (google and you will understand why I said that) and the same old everything just slightly faster. Apple has really made progress in 5 models havent they?

john.smith_2084 said,
I got an iPad Mini for 329$ 16GB which is equal to Windows 8 Tablet 64GB

iPad Mini:
Screen = wow
Graphics = wow
Thin = wow
Light = wow
Apps and games = wow

Acer Iconia Specs

8.1" 1280 x 800 resolution, high-brightness (300-nit): with integrated 5-Point multi-touch screen, supporting finger touch and image auto rotation
Windows 8
Intel® Atom™ Dual-Core Processor Z2760 1.5GHz with Intel® Burst Technology up to 1.8GHz - CPU more powerful VS ARM CPU
2048MB of LPDDR2 800 MHz Onboard memory chip support - MORE RAM
Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator with 64MB of dedicated system memory MORE POWERFUL GRAPHICS
32GB Internal Storage - MORE STORAGE AT LESSER PRICE
High-definition audio support - Not supported in iOS
Two Built-in Stereo Speakers - vs One crappy speaker
Integrated Digital Microphone
802.11a/b/g/n Wireless
Bluetooth® 4.0 + EDR - iPad uses older spec
1- Micro USB 2.0 Port - not on iPad
1 - Micro-HDMI™ with HDCP support - Not on iPad
MicroSD memory slot up to 32GB(SDHC 2.0 compatible) - Not on iPad
2MP Rear-Facing Camera - iPad has a better camera
2MP Front-Facing Camera - same

JUst in hardware alone the Mini loses against a product that cost less. Fcat is, the iPad Mini is over-priced by about $100

When you want to know if an Apple product costs to much? Just compare it to what the competition offers where in most cases you get better hardware, better software and of course a better price.
Sensors:Gyroscope, E-Compass, G-Sensor, Ambient light sensor
2-Cell Li-Polymer Battery

Microsoft kind of remind me of movie studios nowadays. Releasing horrible movies and throwing hundreds of millions in marketing, yet still flopping at the box office.

only windows 8 tablet owners know how really bad they are

I've tried four, five if you count the xps 12 hybrid disaster

glen8 said,
only windows 8 tablet owners know how really bad they are

I've tried four, five if you count the xps 12 hybrid disaster

really? I know a few people who own windows 8 tablets, and their tablet make iPad users jealous.

glen8 said,
only windows 8 tablet owners know how really bad they are

I've tried four, five if you count the xps 12 hybrid disaster

Wow, that was a pretty desperate response. Who would try 5 of anything before giving up. I'm going to call BS on this one.

uxo22 said,

Wow, that was a pretty desperate response. Who would try 5 of anything before giving up. I'm going to call BS on this one.

Dell XPS 10 - Personally liked the machine, but thought RT was too limited so decided to try full on windows

Asus ME 400C - Loved this tablet, really thin and light but screen was coming away from the glass

Asus ME 400C - Second attempt, full of dead pixels (obviously screen fault)

Dell Latitude 10 - Lasted a day before it refused to charge

Dell XPS 12 - Screen rotation wouldnt work, dead pixel, heavy and thick for a tablet, awful trackpad, IE kept crashing, even after fresh rebuild and all the updates. i5 cpu was fast, but poor battery life and it got hot (fan noise and toasty legs)

Now you would instantly think my disappointment in windows 8 tablets is down to hardware build quality issues. That aside, when I did manage to use the OS....as a tablet, it failed. I mean it failed hard.

They are full blown computers in a tablet case. If that's what you want, great. but they are not what I would class as a tablet computer. IMHO, and everyone is welcome to their opinions, tablets should be like consumer devices. Turn on, work, turn off. No messing about.

p.s. Serious question...why would I BS?

link8506 said,

really? I know a few people who own windows 8 tablets, and their tablet make iPad users jealous.

In what way? Personally I didn't get on with it. I do like windows 8, just not on a tablet. IF, microsoft built a new OS from the ground up, which just used metro and nothing else. No windows hiding in the background doing windows updates, anti-virus etc etc....I mean a true tablet operating system I think it would be amazing.

I loved the MS apps though, news, weather, music, video etc etc. They were very good.

glen8 said,

In what way? Personally I didn't get on with it. I do like windows 8, just not on a tablet. IF, microsoft built a new OS from the ground up, which just used metro and nothing else. No windows hiding in the background doing windows updates, anti-virus etc etc....I mean a true tablet operating system I think it would be amazing.

I loved the MS apps though, news, weather, music, video etc etc. They were very good.


funny that you say that windows RT is too limited (in your previous comment) and then say on this one that MS should build a tablet OS from the ground (which means it would be much more limited than WindowsRT, and be like iOS).

windows RT is a great because you get a kind of computer, with full file management, a full web browser with flash player, printing support, office, great mouse/keyboard support (which is a good thing when you need to do actual work), and at the same time, it is a malware proof operating system. You can't get infected by accidentally executing a malicious EXE file because it's fully sandboxed.

what impress iPad users with windows RT/8 tablets, is usually the flash player support in IE metro, and the desktop.
many people are interested in the ability to plug a keyboard dock to transform a tablet into a full computer ready to use for school or business work, because that means they don't have to carry a laptop in addition to their tablet.

if Microsoft had created a tablet OS from scratch, we would lose that huge advantage.

if a user don't want to use advanced features, that's fine, he can ignore the desktop. But he'll be happy to have it when he needs it.

Kalint said,
Office is coming to iOS so again... iPad is better, got it

office mobile doesn't have the same capabilities as the full office suite.

furthermore, the iPad has no printing capabilities, and it can't even can read/save documents from a usb key.

it can't browse every website, since it doesn't support flash player.

so no, the iPad is definitely not better.

link8506 said,

office mobile doesn't have the same capabilities as the full office suite.

furthermore, the iPad has no printing capabilities, and it can't even can read/save documents from a usb key.

it can't browse every website, since it doesn't support flash player.

so no, the iPad is definitely not better.

The iOS devices have been able to print for a few years now. At least two.

NeoTrunks said,

The iOS devices have been able to print for a few years now. At least two.

using costly printers that have support for the iPad? Maybe.
but not on regular printers.

same for scanners.

NeoTrunks said,

With the right software, you can get any printer to work. I never had any problems using Printopia - http://ecamm.com/mac/printopia/.

that's a ridiculous solution that requires a computer.

the whole point of windows tablets is that they can replace both legacy tablets (like the iPad) and computers.

examples like yours just prove that ios devices are not enough for regular people. They still need a computer because ios devices alone can't do even basic things.

link8506 said,

that's a ridiculous solution that requires a computer.

the whole point of windows tablets is that they can replace both legacy tablets (like the iPad) and computers.

examples like yours just prove that ios devices are not enough for regular people. They still need a computer because ios devices alone can't do even basic things.

It's a solution that still works. How many people buy a printer to use exclusively with a tablet. For what it's worth, it's more than I can say about my Windows Phone. I cannot print through that at all.

Each device has their pros and cons. But to say that you can't print on iOS devices at all, despite a few caveats, is just false.

Kalint said,
Office is coming to iOS so again... iPad is better, got it
The iPad is getting Office Mobile which is no different than what you see on Windows Phone OS. Surface Pro and Surface RT both come with a FULL VERSION of the Desktop Office Suite. Not some stripped down set of editors with a similar name.

You really need to read just a bit more.

The iPad has no WIRED print capabilities; however, it certainly can print (AirPrint is the wireless print feature of all iOS, and all it requires is network access to the printer in question - most HP inkjets have supported it for years; you don't need an Apple router, either).

"Microsoft targets iPad Mini by highlighting an awful Windows 8 tablet"

Yet, the awful tablet is still shown doing things that you can do on a mini. I think the point that MS was making hit it's mark.

uxo22 said,
"Microsoft targets iPad Mini by highlighting an awful Windows 8 tablet"

Yet, the awful tablet is still shown doing things that you can do on a mini. I think the point that MS was making hit it's mark.

Exactly!!! But the fans who can't see beyond what the tablet is made out of, totally miss the point of the ad. Shows how Apple has their brain in total disarray.

uxo22 said,
"Microsoft targets iPad Mini by highlighting an awful Windows 8 tablet"

Yet, the awful tablet is still shown doing things that you can do on a mini. I think the point that MS was making hit it's mark.

Yea, i think this was more of a way to show off the windows RT OS vs the ipad mini apple OS... but they should have used better hardware to show it!

Not a bad ad and actually the point here is critical, cheap Windows 8 tablets that can be used like PCs, hook it up to a monitor mouse and keyboard and you have the ability to do things very much like always on a PC.

But yes, this is really bad hardware for this comparison unfortunately.

It's strange they put that tablet to compare... there are better choices, and even more better ones coming.

LOL

"actually you are a PC"

YES!!!! you ARE a pc because you sure ain't a tablet

Installing Update 13 of 49

I can't believe they're using "PC" as something positive in the tablet world.

Oh, and here's Outlook with a desktop-centric design! I can read and reply to mails! Sure, but try doing that for more than 30 seconds and see if you have any hair left on your scalp.

lmaobox said,
They can just say "Boys, we have a freaking Office, why are you still buying those ipads and androids?"

But but but, my Office365 subscription works just fine in safari.

It only has... you know, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. No big deal, right?

(seriously, game selection is by far one of the reasons I even want to dump Android...)

Address the things that consumers want out of a tablet today, ie apps and MS may get somewhere. These ads all highlight the same thing while ignoring why people actually buy these idevices in droves.

awkward Commercial .. shouldnt have done this.

but then again, some elements like showing Office/Outlook is a convincing fact

I find that desktop variant of Office horrible to use on a touch display. It's very obvious to me that it's not a touch-centric interface and it's basically misclick mania. Also, it wasn't designed with touch gestures in mind either, so there's a lot of wasted space to have UI components that would otherwise be replaced by swipes.

I see how Microsoft thinks it's a strong card to show in ads though, since it's such a strong brand, and so many have used Office in the past.

You can always just connect a keyboard and mouse to use with a Windows tablet though. But MS do need to make Metro versions of Office, although that will take time, it's complex software.

Its the damn retarded Siri voice, it no longer is about mocking if you keep using it as the only voice in the damn commercial. Where is the uber sexy (or better, M.Barrett's) voice for RT?!

So tel me, O wise and learned tablet customer, exactly WHY the Iconia is such a POS. Merely saying it is, with no gist whatever, tells me nothing. Give me gist - not an unexplained opinion.

The main deal breakers would be: Terrible display, Bulky and heavy, No Windows 8 app snapping, Slow internal memory, Battery Life.

PGHammer said,
.....

fat/heavy plastic tablet.
Atom processor <-should have waited until this year's procs were ready instead of last years model.

Could have been done better with WindowsRT and say a SuperAMOLED HD+ panel.

Would have been lighter too.

I argue that tablets in this form factor will offer a HORRID desktop experience, so keep the users out of it as much as possible by making it a WindowsRT device.

No need for expensive battery hungry Intel processor.

SO many ways to re-engineer this thing into a success in the same form factor.

heatlesssun said,
The app snapping issue is fixed at this resolution in 8.1.

App snapping in general is fixed in 8.1.
That whole 2/3 x 1/3 thing was silly. I love having 3 modern apps snapped side x side x side on my 2960 x 1440 !

virtorio said,
In other words, it looks and feels like a device made by Acer.

I have an acer iconia tab w510 and I love it.

the screen is great (IPS), the build quality is fine, and battery life with keyboard dock lasts as long as 16hours.

It's bull**** to say every acer device sucks.

the acer w3 is a sub $300 tablet. Of course the build quality can't match a tablet 50% more expensive.

virtorio said,
For starters, it feels incredibly cheap and has a dreadful screen.
I played with it... and frankly the screen is the only problem.

deadonthefloor said,

That whole 2/3 x 1/3 thing was silly.

I disagree. I hate how there aren't notched spots anymore. And most apps don't resize properly if you select one of the "in between" settings. They just leave empty space. There should have been two split modes: 50/50 and 33/67. The rest are pointless and don't even work right.

lmaobox said,
The main deal breakers would be: Terrible display, Bulky and heavy, No Windows 8 app snapping, Slow internal memory, Battery Life.
This a limitation of Windows 8 itself, when on displays with a resolution below the minimum to support snapping. It should be resolved in 8.1.

MS Marketing has gone sideways for a while now.
This is no exception.

Abysmal tablet.
I would renew my library card and actually use it before buying the Iconia

Don't forget that Microsoft are more into marketing the platform, not necessarily individual devices. Tough I do agree that they could've chosen a better device to highlight the platform on.

Yes, I would be embarrassed to advertise this device. When I got mine at Build, I thought the screen was defective until I found that everyone else's looked just as bad. If the screen had been nice, it would actually be a pretty decent device.