Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is taking jabs at Apple over its new iPads and the comments made by management earlier this week. The company’s PR person says the iPad is trying to catch up to the Surface. The comments came after Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) started this round of jabs by poking at Microsoft during its iPad presentation.

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Apple playing catch up to Microsoft

Microsoft Communications Chief Frank X. Shaw wrote a post for Microsoft’s blog criticizing Apple and answering the pot shots Apple took at Microsoft in its presentation earlier this week. It’s interesting to note that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) referred to Microsoft a lot during its presentation. Shaw may be on to something here.

One of the decisions Apple made was bundling its iWork software with iPads. The software was Apple’s attempt to take on the mighty Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) in the place it excels the most: productivity. Shaw points out that they already bundled Office with the Surface tablet and suggests that Apple is just trying to catch up to what they’re doing with the Surface, particularly since iWork never really gained any traction against Office.

Microsoft wants to take productivity to the tablet

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO Tim Cook also criticized Microsoft’s tablet strategy, suggesting that it was ludicrous to turn PCs into tablets and tablets into PCs. Although Microsoft has struggled to boost sales of its Surface tablets so far, Shaw notes that the Surface is aimed at making productivity possible on a tablet. He basically says it’s easy to make a toy which lets people kill time playing games or doing other things. However, it’s more difficult to make a tablet that performs well enough to replace a larger laptop.

He’s certainly right about that, but unfortunately for now, consumers don’t seem to be interested in using tablets for productivity. It will probably take some time to transition this view of a tablet from a toy over to the productivity machine Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) envisions. But when this does happen, Microsoft ought to see some results.