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Report: Microsoft Banning Corporate Purchasing of Apple Products

Report: Microsoft Banning Corporate Purchasing of Apple Products

Apple and Microsoft have long been sworn rivals, but according to a supposed internal Microsoft email, the company is taking their Apple hate to a whole new level, banning employees from purchasing Macs or iPads using company funds.

ZDNet‘s Mary Jo Foley reports that the decision was apparently passed down just this week, and only applies to employees within their Sales, Marketing, Services, IT, & Operations Group (SMSG), effectively preventing over 46,000 Microsoft employees from using Apple’s products to help them perform their jobs.

Microsoft’s SMSG includes their front-line consumer and business sales personel, as well as their service and support representatives. Perhaps The Loop’s Jim Dalrymple put it best, in a comedic style all his own: “If you’re going to make users suffer, why not force employees to suffer too.”

The entire allegedly leaked internal email can be found below.

From: Alain Crozier
Sent: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 1:17 PM

Subject: Apple Purchases

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.

Outside of the US — we will work with your finance and procurement teams to send the right message and put the right processes in place.

The current purchase levels are low, however we recognize there will be a bit of transition work associated with this.  Details of historical purchases in the US are provided in the attachment to help understand the changes that will be needed.Thank you for your support and leadership on this.

Alain Crozier
CFO  |  WW Sales, Marketing & Services Group
WW SMSG Finance

  1. Guest says:

    I know they are not openly allowed in mexico to use Apple products even for personal use.. hehe.. how nerd!  A friend was afraid to use his iPhone inside MS Office.  And another said he can’t buy the iPhone he wants, cause he works in MS, and they can’t see him with it….   probably was just kiddin’

  2. JG says:

    This seems extreme even for MS.

  3. Bendover says:

    What’s wrong with that it just means they can’t use microsofts money to buy apple products, it does not prohibit them from using them or purchasing them with their own money.

    1. Chris Peterson says:

      Sometimes when you hinder your employees to not be able to buy the ‘best’ tools needed to get a job done, you hinder productivity. I’m not saying Apple products are “the best” but possibly when it comes to certain tasks, they could very well be performed the best on a certain platform over another. This isn’t just phones and iPads, but actual computer use. Macs can also dual-boot into Windows. If I had a choice, I’d prefer using a Macbook Pro or Air over some other machine. Do they want happy employees to be productive or do they want to stifle their productivity. Are they going to check every machine to see if it’s not running Ubuntu or some other OS? 

      1. Mikecp23 says:

        I bet you Apple has the same policy! I’m sure they would flip out if you used Apples corporate money to purchase a competitors product.

  4. Ali hendaoui says:

    I don’t see nothing wrong with that, why would I buy with my own money my rival’s products?!?!?!?!

  5. Benmharvey says:

    What’s wrong with this? I’s company money a Microsoft product will do their job just the same. I’d imagine any division that requires platform testing would still be allowed to use funds to buy Mac hardware

    I’m sure Apple has the same policy to stop spending company funds on Microsoft products

    LOL if this is the best slander you guys have then you must be in trouble

  6. Akshay says:

    What’s the big deal? Makes sense to me… why would Microsoft want their front line staff carrying Apple products? Can you imagine a Microsoft sales person doing a sales pitch at a corporation using a MacBook? What sort of confidence will the prospect have, looking at a sales guy not using his own company’s tools?

    To all the apple lovers out there, who claim this will hinder productivity.. well be a little realistic, these are companies that are competing in the same market space.

    I can’t imagine how much flak an apple employee would have to go through, if he were to purchase a Microsoft product using company funds!

  7. Tikan says:

    So Microsoft is doing what almost every company in the world does….

  8. Shawn Esplin says:

    I think a lot of you are missing the most important aspect of this; Why would microsoft change this policy?

    It really does *not* make sense for either company to ban the purchase of the other’s products, because microsoft should want their products to run correctly on Apple’s hardware, and there are Mac versions of some ms software which Apple of course would want to work correctly.

    If this is real, the only reasons that I could see for this policy change are the rather petty motive of not giving a competitor any money even when you don’t have a competing product (as far as I know, ms still doesn’t sell PC hardware), or what seems more likely (and more embarrassing):

    Maybe more of microsoft’s own employees than they’d like to admit prefer using at least some of Apple’s products, and instead of actually producing superior products, they would rather try to keep people from seeing that preference.

  9. guester says:

    Makes sense. It allows Microsoft to focus on their core products even better. Employees can purchase this stuff on their own with their generous salaries. Makes absolutely no sense to spend Microsoft dollars to buy Apple products for productivity in the workplace and beyond.

  10. saintlouisranger says:

    Well, this is one way for MS to sell 46,000 Windows 8 tablets, I can’t see another way for them to sell may more than that anyway… ;>}

  11. Matej Faganel says:

    @Akshay: you know, that MS core products are OS and SW and not HW (so, why that panic about Apple products) … you know that MacBook (and others Apple products) can run Windows even better than odher PC’s (so, why that panic about Apple products) … you know how much money would MS earn till now, if they would lounch Office for iPad … you know that in all this years, when MS was the “biggest” tech company all their HW development were crap … you know that Oulook for Mac can not sincronise MS Live service such as calendars and contacts … you know, that I give a s**t on MS, because they are slow and lezy, hiding behind company regulations and counting on public sector all over the world?

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