12 things Microsoft does better than Apple

The days of the Microsoft/Apple rivalry are long over.

Microsoft makes some of the best apps you can get for an Apple iPhone, and Apple recently reciprocated that love by featuring Microsoft at one of its legendary on-stage events.

Still, as the second-most-valuable company in the world, Apple gets all the attention when it comes to its technology.

Just know that Microsoft is doing some really cool stuff that Apple hasn’t even begun to (publicly) discuss. In fact, Apple is taking its cues from Microsoft in some key areas.

Here are the 12 things that Microsoft does better than Apple.

As you may guess from its name, Windows handles application windows better than Apple OS X. In Windows 10, just drag an open window to the top of the screen to full-screen it, or to the side to make it fill half the screen. It's handy for multitasking.

Matt Weinberger/Business Insider

Unlike Apple's Siri, Microsoft Cortana actually learns a noticeable amount from your preferences over time. Even better, Cortana is available straight from the Windows 10 taskbar, or on iPhone and Android -- while Siri is stuck on the iPhone and iPad, without even Mac OS X integration.


Apple's OS X hasn't changed much over the last several years. But from Windows 7 to Windows 8 to Windows 10, Microsoft has removed, re-added, and then gussied up its legendary Start menu. Now, you can find your files and apps faster -- and get key information, like when your Uber is going to arrive, without opening up the app.


Windows has always been a better place for gaming than the Mac. With Windows 10, Microsoft doubled up on that with a new Xbox app that literally lets you stream games from the Xbox One console to your Windows 10 laptop, tablet, or PC.

Tech Insider/Antonio Villas-Boas

Microsoft is better at cloud services than Apple. With apps like OneNote and OneDrive, you can have your files and notes anywhere, at any time -- not just on Apple devices.

Matt Weinberger/Business Insider

Microsoft's hardware business has been pretty great at kind of rethinking what a computer is, and who it's for. Like the Microsoft Surface Book, which is a combination tablet and laptop, with enough horsepower to play most marquee games.


In fact, Apple more-or-less copied the Surface Pro 4 tablet with its own iPad Pro. But where the iPad Pro runs a version of Apple iOS, meaning you only get a limited selection of apps, the Surface Pro 4 is all Windows, all the time.

Matt Weinberger/Business Insider

And while Microsoft has all but lost the smartphone market to Apple and Google, don't discount some of the stuff that Windows 10 Mobile has that the iPhone doesn't. First off, it has a slick look, with big easy-to-push buttons...

Lisa Eadicicco

...plus some truly nifty, if still a little gimmicky, features like Windows Continuum, which lets you use your Windows 10 Mobile phone as something like a full PC. With limited app support, but still.


The Microsoft of the last few years has also much better at bold experimentation. That includes coming out with lots of nifty experimental apps for Android and iPhone, including the recent Hub Keyboard, which seriously cuts down on the amount you have to switch between apps.


That experimentation also applies to advanced scientific research: Microsoft Research contributes findings to everything from speech recognition to artificial intelligence. Plus, it results in cool futuristic technologies like the HoloLens holographic goggles.


In general, Microsoft has been very good at playing with others recently. Under CEO Satya Nadella, Microsoft has made more of its apps available on more platforms, while simultaneously striking deals with one-time competitors like Red Hat..

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

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