If an individual person wants to buy a Surface Pro tablet, you can do it from the Microsoft Store or hundreds of retailers. But if you’re looking to outfit your business or other large institution with computers, you might not be comfortable buying straight from Microsoft, Amazon, or Best Buy.
So Microsoft is partnering with several companies that are used to dealing with enterprise clients. Soon you’ll be able to buy a Surface Pro from Dell or HP.
Why buy a Surface Pro from one of those companies? Because along with the tablet, you can opt for the same enterprise-class support and services offered by Dell and HP.
For example, customers who buy a Surface Pro from Dell will automatically get a one-year basic hardware service plan. But they can upgrade to a 4 year warranty or opt for ProSupport and Accidental Damage protection plans.
Dell says customers will also be able to take advantage of the company’s configuration and deployment services, while HP says the Surface Pro 3 will be available with a new set of “HP Care Packs” for deployment and management.
In other words, these new partnerships are aimed at businesses that are used to the kind of services and support offered by companies such as Dell or HP. Those customers may have been interested in Surface Pro tablets, but uncomfortable buying hardware that’s not sold by a company they’re used to working with.
Now Dell and HP will be able to sell Microsoft’s tablets alongside their own offerings.
This could help Microsoft expand its reach by making Surface Pro tablets more palatable to enterprise users. But it also could help ease some tensions that may have arisen between Microsoft and PC makers when Microsoft started selling its own computers.