Microsoft Teams with Dell, HP on Surface Pro Tablet for the Enterprise

Even before the launch of its new Windows 10 operating system in July, Microsoft's goal was to get its OS onto 1 billion devices over the next two to three years. One way to get there is to sell more mobile devices -- especially the Surface Pro 2-in-1 -- into the enterprise, and Dell and HP are coming on board to help.

On the surface, it might seem odd that companies like Dell and HP, which make competing tablets, would agree to sell Microsoft's devices along with their own. However, both companies said they're looking at Microsoft's new Surface Enterprise Initiative as a way to offer a wider range of support services to their big business customers.

For Microsoft, Dell and HP represent "the first in a series of partnerships to deliver even more value to our customers," according to Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice president for Microsoft's Windows and Devices Group. Other long-time partners expected to join the initiative include Accenture and Avanade, he added.

Targeting Enterprises' 'Unique' Needs

The Surface initiative marks a significant advancement for its enterprise customers, said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, in a statement. Enterprise users of Windows have unique sets of needs, and the company is "serious about moving people from needing Windows to choosing Windows to loving Windows," he said.

As part of the initiative, both Dell and HP will -- starting in October -- begin selling Microsoft's Surface Pro and related accessories to enterprise customers across the U.S. and Canada. In early 2017, both companies plan to offer the Surface and other services to business customers in the 28 other global markets where Microsoft's 2-in-1 is currently sold.

"Many businesses are evaluating Surface Pro tablets, and when our team proposed this in a recent Dell Customer Advisory Council meeting, those customers told us they love...

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