Rumor: Microsoft bans buying iPads, Macs with company money?

Microsoft makes a lot of products or partners with companies to develop hardware and software. Naturally, you might expect that Microsoft would not allow its employees to acquire hardware made by competitors using the company's money. In fact you might expect that to be a long time policy.

That apparently wasn't the case, at least until this past week. ZDNet reports that the 46,000 team members of the Sales, Marketing, Services, IT, & Operations Group at Microsoft received an email from its chief financial officer Alain Crozier. In the email, which has yet to be officially confirmed by Microsoft, Crozier states:

Within SMSG we are putting in place a new policy that says that Apple products (Mac & iPad) should not be purchased with company funds. In the US we will be turning off the Apple products from the Zones Catalog next week, which is the standard purchasing mechanism for these products.

The article points out that this kind of activity is nothing new to Microsoft. In 2009, the company announced that it would not allow company funds to purchase iPhones, Blackberry or Palm devices or their respective data plans. In fact all Microsoft team members received free Windows Phone-based devices to use in 2010.

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Lots of silly people here.

Look at the MS employee posts and the alumni posts.

This is for Partner groups. If you're an MS employee on-site with a customer, the last thing you should be whipping out is an iDevice.

This is why all Canadian MS employees had to upgrade to Windows Phones once carriers started offering them.

I suppose there will be edge cases where the MS employee is selling or supporting technology for Apple products, in which case it makes sense to show that you're intimately familiar with the product you're selling/supporting.

There is nothing they can use from the Mac interface anymore as MS added everything including the rubber ducky icon. So, maybe they will allow Chromebooks to start to gather ideas for Windows 9... haha

NeoPogo said,
There is nothing they can use from the Mac interface anymore as MS added everything including the rubber ducky icon. So, maybe they will allow Chromebooks to start to gather ideas for Windows 9... haha

i agree. they are not banning the usage of apple products per se, rather they have no reason to buy more, since they have finally finished copying everything they can. lmfao.

NeoPogo said,
There is nothing they can use from the Mac interface anymore as MS added everything including the rubber ducky icon.

I guess you're trying to be funny and unknowledgable at the same time. The 46,000 team members of the Sales, Marketing, Services, IT, & Operations Group they are talking about, those are the employees that are visible employees that visible to Microsoft customers or potential customers.

Let me put it this way. If a MS Sales person is trying to sell a Windows Phones to a potential client / business enterprise, then you should not be sporting other named brand phones other than the one you are trying to sell because if a client sees you are using an iPhone or an Android phone, it is most likely they will ask you "so why are you using a different phone", and believe me, potential sales clients are not stupid because it is their job to know the product and the representative that is selling the product.

In 2009, the company announced that it would not allow company funds to purchase iPhones, Blackberry or Palm devices or their respective data plans. In fact all Microsoft team members received free Windows Phone-based devices to use in 2010.
I bet all Microsoft employees will be getting free Windows 8 tablets later this year.

Thing is they would need to be able to test the performance for MS Office apps hosted on VDI infrastrcture.... Many enterprises buy ipads for that. (Many that I've consulted with use vmware view on thier ipads) Would those employees have to buy teh ipads with thier own cash to test the latest version of Microsoft Office or Windows over that kinda scenario? That is no good. Expect to see more interop issues. Bleh. Makes us hypervisor people have more work.

Try reading the article or the dozens of posts above this that point out this is specifically for their SMSG group which is internal operations not development, R&D, testing or QC.

UndergroundWire said,
Things are that bad that they have to make it a rule?

I think it applies to society's rules and laws as well. So yes, it's really that bad.

It makes sense even if they ARE using the Macs to develop software for the Mac platform. If it's official work machines, then they can procure them through the company no doubt without issue. But employees buying their own gear with company money? They should be buying THEIR company's gear.

Rumor or no, makes sense... unless they are using it to develop software for the mac platform... I would imagine that would be the exception.

There's a difference between personal devices and development devices. This wouldn't affect the stuff they use to test and develop software, only what employees get for personal use.

Kirkburn said,
There's a difference between personal devices and development devices. This wouldn't affect the stuff they use to test and develop software, only what employees get for personal use.

Business use would be more appropriate; if I work at McDonalds soes not imply I have to eat there only.

Fritzly said,

Business use would be more appropriate; if I work at McDonalds soes not imply I have to eat there only.

And I even think McD CEO's take there suppliers somewhere else for a business lunch/dinner-meeting

McD would very likely never take people to other fast food outlets on company money. They would go to restaurants, because that's not what McD primarily competes against.

Enron said,
Hey, I wonder what kind of computers they use at Apple.

I remember reading years ago that a lot of the apple website server were BSD or Linux based servers (not running os x), and I just found something with someone claiming they use a lot of sun servers and solaris/linux.

Enron said,
Hey, I wonder what kind of computers they use at Apple.

Computers running an OS that was a spin off of something Xerox threw together one day :-P

Enron said,
Hey, I wonder what kind of computers they use at Apple.

Well iCloud is hosted on Windows Azure, so it's not impossible that they use MS products somewhere.

One of the worse thing about apple is how their workers are treated. For example they aren't allowed to work on open sources software, even outside the company.

Anthonyd said,

One of the worse thing about apple is how their workers are treated. For example they aren't allowed to work on open sources software, even outside the company.

I think you have that backwards. Apple (and their employees) work on many open source projects. However, Microsoft employees are not permitted to look at open source code or even look at SAMPLE CODE.

Rosyna said,

I think you have that backwards. Apple (and their employees) work on many open source projects. However, Microsoft employees are not permitted to look at open source code or even look at SAMPLE CODE.

I guess this doesn't count then.... ?

http://www.codeplex.com

I hadn't heard about either company having a policy against open source projects.

It might make sense though, to avoid accusations that their software is using copied code.

Rosyna said,

I think you have that backwards. Apple (and their employees) work on many open source projects. However, Microsoft employees are not permitted to look at open source code or even look at SAMPLE CODE.

What Crap! I think get your facts before posting rubbish {FYI, i am a MS alumini, and i know a lot about how they function internally}

Shadrack said,

Computers running an OS that was a spin off of something Xerox threw together one day :-P

And MS copied as well..............

Rosyna said,
I think you have that backwards. Apple (and their employees) work on many open source projects. However, Microsoft employees are not permitted to look at open source code or even look at SAMPLE CODE.

Please tell me that you aren't serious here.

Rosyna said,
I think you have that backwards. Apple (and their employees) work on many open source projects. However, Microsoft employees are not permitted to look at open source code or even look at SAMPLE CODE.

Have you been in a coma for the last decade?
While that 'may' have been the case from a couple of scathing internal emails when Bill G was running the show, Microsoft have now taken a different stance on Open Source, including CONTRUBUTING SOURCE CODE to Linux Kernel (for better operation as Azure VM) all the way to NuGet and codeplex for visual studio projects.

Please do not use your decades old 'wisdom' as todays 'knowledge', you just look foolish.

Rosyna said,

I think you have that backwards. Apple (and their employees) work on many open source projects. However, Microsoft employees are not permitted to look at open source code or even look at SAMPLE CODE.

And you would be wrong.

I call shenanigans. Microsoft has a section called the Mac Business Unit that developers software (including Office) for Macs. It may be that the policy is aimed at the *Windows* units - as opposed to corporate (hence OS-neutral) or Mac-facing sides of Microsoft.

PGHammer said,
I call shenanigans. Microsoft has a section called the Mac Business Unit that developers software (including Office) for Macs. It may be that the policy is aimed at the *Windows* units - as opposed to corporate (hence OS-neutral) or Mac-facing sides of Microsoft.

I would like to highlight


Within SMSG ...

PGHammer said,
I call shenanigans. Microsoft has a section called the Mac Business Unit that developers software (including Office) for Macs. It may be that the policy is aimed at the *Windows* units - as opposed to corporate (hence OS-neutral) or Mac-facing sides of Microsoft.

Has nothing to do with this. As someone scorp508 stated above. SMSG are primarily customer facing employes. It doesn't look good to try to get a potential customer to buy your products while you do your work on the competitors.

Makes sense. Other than buying apple stuff to develop software on and for testing, no reason MS people should be using Macs as their main platform. Same goes with people over at Apple buying Windows/PCs for other than testing.

SMSG are primarily customer facing employees who have face time with customers. It kind of makes sense to have that staff promote your own brand. (Full disclosure, I'm a MS employee.)

That is completely sensible. I would not expect Toyota to have company cars made by Ford. This is no different.

Why should Microsoft let its staff spend company money on Apple fashion accessories? They will definitely need them in their development labs. I have heard MS talking about "Eating their own Dog Food". It would be a pretty poor company advertisement that showed them using someone else's 'productivity tool'.

The first Windows Phone I ever saw was in the hands of a Microsoft employee. Convince your staff that what you do is good and then they will be better at dealing with customers.

holdfast said,
That is completely sensible. I would not expect Toyota to have company cars made by Ford. This is no different.

Bad example - because it's almost guaranteed they do have ford cars, take them apart, find out how they work, and copy the functions, it's pretty much normal in worldwide industry to do that.

n_K said,

Bad example - because it's almost guaranteed they do have ford cars, take them apart, find out how they work, and copy the functions, it's pretty much normal in worldwide industry to do that.

No it isn't. You wouldn't see a Toyota representative driving a Ford Mondeo to an official event. Sure the enginnering department would have compeditors cars just like like the mac/ios development team at microsoft would use Macs/iPads.

n_K said,

Bad example - because it's almost guaranteed they do have ford cars, take them apart, find out how they work, and copy the functions, it's pretty much normal in worldwide industry to do that.

No they wouldn't, and don't. Because who seriously wants to know how a Ford runs, besides being complete junk.

Now a Toyota on the other hand is so damn amazingly designed, it is ridiculous. Everything is easy to change (I do all my own maintenance and repairs, that includes mechanics as well) on my Camry. And they have no problem making it to 300,000+ miles on one motor.

Now Ford on the other hand, might dissect a Toyota... for, y'know, research.

I wanna say MSFT = Toyota, Apple = Ford, but I know it isn't true.

holdfast said,

The first Windows Phone I ever saw was in the hands of a Microsoft employee. Convince your staff that what you do is good and then they will be better at dealing with customers.

That is the culprit: "Convince"; forcing people to do it most likely wil obtain the opposite result.

.Neo said,
That's funny considering a lot of their marketing was done using Macs apparently.

only marketing done by outside agencies, which are obviously free to buy what they want.

Is this even possible? Have they stopped developing OSX and iOS software? If not, how will they test it on new systems?

OH, I see it just applies to sales and marketing. Could be, could be.

It's confusing because the opening line says: "Microsoft makes a lot of products or partners with companies to develop hardware and software."

a1ien said,
Is this even possible? Have they stopped developing OSX and iOS software? If not, how will they test it on new systems?

OH, I see it just applies to sales and marketing. Could be, could be.

You don't need the actual hardware of iOS to make and test apps, you are aware of that...right?