Bill Gates: iPad Users Are ‘Frustrated’ Due To Lack Of Keyboard & MS Office [VIDEO]


Bill Gates, the former chief executive and current chairman of Microsoft, has taken a shot at the iPad in an interview this morning on CNBC, saying that a lot of iPad users are frustrated due to lack of keyboard and inability to create documents since they don’t have MS Office, reports Business Insider. Meanwhile, the Microsoft Surface brings the “portability of the tablet but the richness of the PC”, he added.

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When asked about the declining PC market, Gates said that due to the growing popularity of tablets, it’s going to be harder and harder to distinguish products that are PCs versus tablets. What Mr. Gates does not realise is that while some people are frustrated by the iPad’s limitations, most embrace it, as Apple sold 19.5 million iPads during the last quarter. Over that same period, HP, the world’s number one PC seller, managed to sell 11.7 million PCs.

Microsoft’s Surface has sold in very small volumes relative to the iPad. Perhaps Gates, Steve Ballmer, and Microsoft have been too quick in their pursuit of making a tablet that is as powerful as a PC. Perhaps people want something a bit more lightweight right now.

Truth is, the iPad actually works really well for surfing the web, emailing, watching videos and playing games just as it is, don’t you agree?


  • PhotoGreekVM

    Like all technology companies these days, everyone is trying to justify their existence.

    Lack of keyboard for the iPad; I disagree. I use the Logitech Ultra-thin Bluetooth keyboard for iPad and I love it!

    Lack of MS Office; Well although an Office app for iPad would be a nice to have, I can live without it. The Pages app works fine for me for word processing and I also use the Cloud On app for quick editing of existing Office files.

    I’m sure the Surface tablet is great and competition is getting tighter, but I still love my iPad and would never change it for the world.

  • Olley

    “I think a lot of customers don’t want a cap [on their monthly bill],”David Fuller, chief marketing director for Telus.

  • Me

    I would love to have the Surface Pro to replace my aging laptop, but windows 8 stopped me (the price didn’t help either). I bought a iPad mini for now, but I expect the Surface and Win8 will get better. The programs I need for work are not compatible with Win8 yet. That should be fixed by next year. Both the iPad and the Surface are just steps on the path to convergence. The Surface is just too early, the technology isn’t small enough yet.

  • FragilityG4

    He must be right, look at how well the Surface sales are …

  • John Post

    Look at all the ipad keyboard manufacturers that deliver great keyboard covers. So the novelty of the keyboard cover of the surface missed me conpletly. 2. Good is good enough: look at simplicity of mobile mail clients. Fir most people enough not the richness of IBM Notes or Microsoft Outlook. Office editors online are now commodity: Google Docs, IBM Docs and Office 365 work on (mobile) browser or have a special App. And there are smaller companies that jumped in the hole MS leaves as long as it does not deliver an Office app. 3. To tell users that they are frustrated about no Office on iPad, then why doesn’t MS come out with an app. Look at Google: they take their users serious and create apps for Android AND iOS. For Microsoft it seems like money comes first, so Windows Phone only, and forget the rest. Eg Sharepoint app is n/a for Android. The apps are in low quality compared to WP apps. So it looks like it is all about the money and disrespectful IMO to people who are now WP users.
    4 looks like Bill tries to cover up the slow growth of WP8 and now shouts something to make noise.

  • Well, as an educator with students who all use laptops instead of textbooks, I would much prefer to have students using Surface tablets over iPads simply due to the fact that so many things on the net simply don’t work on the iPad.

    For example, although I’m sure there is an easy way for people more in the know, It took my school’s tech-support team twenty minutes to help a student get a downloadable pdf file from a site into their email inbox so that he could send it to someone.

    Google Docs is terrible on any tablet. Try viewing a document that contains a table in the Google Drive app. Doesn’t work. Try making a copy of a teacher’s worksheet. Just not possible.

    I just don’t see why educators are supposed to embrace the iPad unless we go all in and make an interactive iBook for Apple to own the rights to. All the teachers at my school hate the iPad for its reduced functionality.

    Nevertheless as Gary mentioned above, the iPad is a wonderful device for things like email, videos, games, etc.. I suppose people in general just don’t see a need for increased functionality given the poor sales figures of the Surface, by which I am quite surprised.

    I do see a problem however in the marketplace for people like my students who need a little more functionality than what is currently offered by a tablet, but without the horsepower and size of a laptop.

  • CyberAce

    Not frustrated iPad user here and pretty sure Bill does not actually believe what he is saying either. Wonder where he gets his stats from if he does believe it.

  • WatDah

    Calm down iBoys and iGirls. I think this has been blown out of proportion. Or Usman took it too personally. What Gates is referring to is the “iPad type” tablet in general, and not just the iPad. If you watch the whole thing, they were talking about how new technologies like Cloud computing is coming along, and how big business players will take advantage of it. Gates was discussing how Cloud computing is a big opportunity for everyone, and was implying that MS, being a company that relies on business computing and software (as they were discussing prior to being questioned), sees an inconvenience with the products in the current tablet market in terms of business use. MS built the Surface in an effort to fill in that hole, and is “trying to gain shares” aimed at that certain area, while further utilizing the advantages of the Cloud.

    Usman is right in saying “the iPad actually works really well for surfing the web, emailing, watching videos and playing games”, but in terms of business and productivity, the Surface is a better choice.

    After watching this, I actually thought that Gates and MS has quite a clear sight of what the Surface is targeting, where their focus is on, and what the product is really about. The intention of the Surface was not to “kill” the iPad to begin with, as stated by Steve Ballmer on the very first day.

  • Surface tries to do too much. Almost reminds me of RIM’s rhetoric before that their phones could ‘do everything’ for business types–that turned out really well.

  • WatDah

    I agree on saying it’s trying to do too much. Which leads me to think that the Surface maybe – just maybe – is too early for the public? If you think about it, a product like the Surface is bound to happen, or will be needed. Heck, when I first heard about it and what it’s meant to do, I really thought I’d jump right in. But then on second thought, it’s just not the time to really switch to a Surface yet. Obviously the price is an issue as of now to what it offers. But I’ll bet on MS, that if we give it some more time to develop, more people and businesses will start to adopt it.
    RIM had the right idea, but they don’t have the right background to back themselves up (OS software programs and integration), and at the time, it was, also, too early for the public.

  • Twenty minutes? You must be joking.
    Step one. Click on the link to download the PDF.
    Step Two. Tap near the bottom of the screen to bring up the “Share” button.
    Step Three. Click on the “email” option.
    Step Four. Enter the recipient address.
    Step Five. Click Send.

    Pages if fine on the iPad as is Quickoffice. Why bring up Google Docs?

  • Bobbi Style

    Ummmm, no….. HATE office and I do not want to carry a keyboard about………