Earlier today, Microsoft released a new ad that attempts to show how much better the ASUS VivoTab is at getting stuff done than the iPad. A similar TV spot was aired last night with Siri being used to mock things like the iPad’s lack of Powerpoint (a Microsoft product).
Alongside its TV ads, Microsoft has put up a new webpage called “iPad vs. Windows.” At the bottom of the comparison it says that the ASUS ViviTab “has a bigger touchscreen” than the iPad.
Elliot Temple did some calculations on his blog, and he was able to determine that Microsoft skewed the numbers to say that the ASUS tablet had a 10.1-inch display vs. the iPad’s 9.7-inch display. “This is not to scale,” according to Elliot. “Microsoft has drawn a 10.1 inch tablet 36% larger than a 9.7 inch tablet (140×78 pixels vs 102×79). This is so far off you can visually see it’s wrong.”
The ASUS screen is actually smaller than the iPad’s:
The iPad screen is 7.76 by 5.82 inches. The ASUS screen is 8.8 by 4.95 inches. ASUS is larger in one direction but smaller in the other direction, and has 3.55% less area than the iPad, not 36% more as Microsoft depicts.
How can the screen with a larger diagonal measurement be smaller? Because it’s a different shape. Long and thin gets you a bigger diagonal but a smaller screen, for the same diagonal inches.
The Surface hasn’t sold well at all, and now Microsoft is restoring to cheap (inaccurate) shots at the iPad to try and sell Windows tablets (like saying the iPad can’t run software made by Microsoft).
Microsoft also says that the iPad costs $699, which is only true of the larger 64GB model. But hey, $499 vs. $449 would make for boring marketing.