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November 1, 2016

The Microsoft Surface Studio

Filed under: Main — admin @ 12:01 am


I’m floored. Not known as a hardware company beyond mice and keyboards, Microsoft has quickly shown that it can be more innovative than Apple.

In all my computer career, I never thought I’d ever write that.

Apple made its fame by creating a computer, the Macintosh, and then software that ran specifically for that hardware. The result was perfect harmony, but as I’ve written before, Apple is a software company disguised as a hardware company.

The trend continues withe Apple’s mobile devices, which are essentially vehicles for running the iOS operating system. Again, Apple is a software company. Its success comes from the predictability of writing software to one, specific platform. Microsoft was never so lucky.

No, Microsoft had to write software to a generic platform, which meant that to be accomodating the software had to be weak. Granted, Windows and Office have improved, but never did I imagine that Microsoft would consider designing hardware to specifically showcase their software.

A few years ago, the Microsoft Surface tablet appeared. Unlike the horrid Zune, Microsoft actually put effort into keeping the Surface alive. The Zune was doomed because A) it was a blatant iPod rip-off, B) it was a weak rip-off and C), Microsoft under Steve Ballmer had no clue what it was doing.

So now the new guy, John W. Thompson, apparently has his stuff together.

The Surface Studio is beatiful. It reminds me that Apple hasn’t introduced a new desktop Macintosh design in about 5 years. And their entire desktop line is stagnant and has been so for the longest period in Apple’s corporate history.

True, the Mac represents only about 10 percent of Apple’s overall revenue, but it also showcases Apple’s design prowess.

Not any more.

The Surface Studio also features a puck-like device for input. Truly, it will revolutionize graphics arts. In fact, I can imagine how Apple’s designers are seething with jealously and looking at some way to copy the gizmo — if their corporate overlords would let them.

The only downside to the Surface Studio is the price, close to $3,000. The quality is worth it and for a graphic designer that’s well within the range of what you expect to pay.

So while I don’t doubt the beauty or genius of the Surface Studio, it causes me to question Apple. Seriously, big red, what the hell is going on?

Mashable Review of the Surface Studio


  1. Whats your opinion on the new MacBook Pro line Dan? Honestly I think this is going to ruin the company, Apple only exists on their elitist image, once they lose that they are just another overpriced garbage computer company.

    Comment by BradC — November 3, 2016 @ 8:28 pm

  2. I’ll be writing about Apple’s direction next week, but the MacBook Pro line seriously disappoints. Apple has thumbed its nose at professional users, designers, and creators since they trashed the Mac Pro about three years ago. From what I read online, many of the professionals are using regular MacBooks now because the Pro line’s performance just isn’t there.

    And I’ve written it before and will write it again: If Adobe released its Creative Cloud suite on Linux, then I think the Macintosh as a product line would disappear entirely.

    Comment by admin — November 4, 2016 @ 8:24 am

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