Whenever a Microsoft employee is photographed using Apple products, it usually leads to lighthearted humor. The most recent instance of this that I can recall was when a photo of Bill Flora, a leader on the team that worked on Microsoft’s Metro UI was spotted using exclusively Apple products in his office. Now, it seems like Microsoft may want to decrease this, at least on its Sales, Marketing, Services, IT and Operations Group (SMSG), which encompasses around 46,000 employees worldwide.
According to a leaked internal email sent out from Alain Crozier, CFO of SMSG, that ZDNet’s Mary-Jo Foley got her hands on, the company plans to revise its policy to prevent employees from purchasing Apple products (Macs and iPads, as specifically mentioned in the email) using company funds. They will be removing Apple products from the internal Zones Catalog, which is the appropriate channel for making these purchases.
When MJF asked a Microsoft Spokesperson about this, they had no comment (neither confirmation or denial). It’s worth noting that this isn’t a ban against using Apple products at all in the workplace — employees can still purchase them with their own cash — it’s simply put in place to prevent them from buying the products from the company’s funds.
It’s an interesting move by Microsoft. Perhaps the company is trying to signal that the teams working on sales and marketing should use the very products that they wish to promote, as one ZDNet commenter points out.