During CNN’s Tuesday evening election coverage, the commentators were using Surface Pro 3 tablets provided by Microsoft—they just weren’t using the tech for its intended purpose. Some of the commentators were caught propping up their iPads on the Surface in front of them, essentially using the Microsoft tablets as an iPad kickstand.
Microsoft provided the network with the tablets for on-air use, as part of a partnership between Bing Pulse and CNN’s election broadcast coverage. In a release from Bing, Bing Pulse allows viewers to give real-time feedback on election events through onscreen reaction polls.
Despite this sponsorship agreement between the two companies, the anchors still chose to use personal iPads. Instead of using the sponsored technology, they hid their Apple products behind the propped-up Surface Pro3’s —and caused a mini-uproar on Twitter, as viewers watched the hosts check election reports on iPads.
— Melbourneer (@_Melbourneer_) November 5, 2014
— Adam (@adamUCF) November 5, 2014
This isn’t the first time Microsoft has had problems getting people to promote the Surface Pro in a positive light.
Despite a five-year and $400 million contract with the NFL, game commentators continually referred to the Surface tablets as iPads and an “iPad-like tool.” As a part of the deal, coaching staff on the field are only allowed to use Surface Pro tablets during game days.