Microsoft Surface Pro 3 - Source: Microsoft Press Images

Microsoft promotion aims to steal your keyboard


In an effort to drum up expanded interest in its Surface Pro 3 line of tablets, Microsoft is running a promotion through July 31st that offers customers up to $650 in credit for their MacBook Air.

First of all, wow. Microsoft really wants to buy some MacBook Airs on the cheap for employee use. In all seriousness, this is a swindle of the highest order, and rather than subjecting our poor readers to a lengthy diatribe, I’ll list the problems with this promotion.

  • The credit only applies to certain model of MacBook Air, and I’d be willing to wager laptops over a couple years old won’t make the cut. Guess what? If you sell a MacBook Air of the variety Microsoft has in mind on your own you’ll most likely recoup more than $650. Furthermore, that money can be used anywhere and for anything, unlike the credit you receive from Microsoft that must be used solely for a Surface Pro 3.
  • Provided you have a model that Microsoft accepts for this promotion, the next step is to hope on hope that Microsoft gives you the maximum credit amount allowed under the promotion. That’s right, trade-in value varies. According to what, no one knows.
  • The MacBook Air being traded in must be in working condition. This makes perfect sense of course; I don’t think anyone would expect Microsoft to pay for broken laptops. However, I thought it was interesting to note that the offer states any water-damage or screen cracks deem a MacBook Air not in working condition for the purposes of this offer. Understandable I guess, but I still got a chuckle out of it. I’d be curious how far “working condition” extends for MacBook Airs in poor physical condition, but alas.
  • Last, but certainly not least, the Surface Pro 3 in its current configuration does not come with a keyboard. You will be paying trading in your MacBook Air for the right to buy a product that touts itself as a laptop replacement, yet lacks a keyboard. A keyboard is extra. For the laptop replacement. Extra. This Microsoft promotion is stealing your keyboard.

I’ve spent limited time with the Surface Pro 3. By all accounts it performs well, and I did enjoy my brief time with it. Unfortunately, the device has its downfalls, not the least of which is the lack of an included keyboard. For a device that purports to be a laptop replacement, it’s a regrettable drawback that is magnified through this type of ill-conceived promotion.

Tags: Apple Macbook Air Microsoft Popular Surface Pro 3

  • Jacob Long

    Honestly, I can’t recall any type of trade-in promotion in which the trade-in value is anywhere near what people could get by selling it themselves. I like this move for Microsoft just because it should draw attention to the Surface and get people thinking about it as a laptop replacement.

    Given the concerted effort to market it as a laptop replacement, though, it seems odd they aren’t bundling it with the keyboard. Too afraid of sticker shock, IMO