Microsoft Surface angers Acer again

News 7 Aug, 2012

PC maker hits out at software giant over its move into the hardware business.

PC giant Acer has savaged Microsoft for daring to go it alone in the tablet market with its Surface device, claiming the move will have dire consequences for the firm’s OEM relationships.

In an interview with the Financial Times, Acer chairman and chief executive, JT Wang, claimed he had asked the firm to think twice about making the Surface.

It is not something you are good at, so please think twice.

“We have said [to Microsoft] think it over. Think twice. It will create a huge negative impact for the ecosystem and other brands may take a negative reaction,” Wang told the Financial Times.

“It is not something you are good at, so please think twice.”

Campbell Kan, Acer’s president for personal computer global operations, is also quoted in the article, and suggests Acer may be forced to consider alternative partners should Microsoft pursue other hardware ventures.

He said: “If Microsoft … is going to do hardware business, what should we do? Should we still rely on Microsoft, or should we find other alternatives?”

Since Microsoft unveiled the Surface, its first in-house built tablet, speculation about the impact it would have on the firm’s relationships with PC makers, such as HP, Acer and Dell, has been rife.

In the past, the PC manufacturers have worked closely with Microsoft, as the vast majority of their devices use the software giant’s flagship Windows operating system.

This is not the first time Acer's senior management team has slated Microsoft's hardware ambitions. The firm initially responded to the Surface launch by questioning how successful the move would be.

Last month, Microsoft confirmed in a SEC filing that the Surface could end up souring relations with its OEM partners.

“Our Surface devices will compete with products made by our OEM partners, which may affect their commitment to our platform,” the document stated.