Fun with no numbers: Microsoft is indefinably great


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You know the old saying: There are lies, damned lies and statistics. And then there are ridiculous half-truths packaged up as marketing. And then there’s Gary. But Gary doesn’t enter into this story.

The Verge’s Tom Warren goes to the source to find out how awesome Microsoft is.

“Microsoft: more people are switching from Macs to Surface than ever before.” (Tip o’ the antlers to @designheretic.)

More! Hey, how many more?!

Indecipherable mumbling more!

Microsoft has been targeting Mac users with its Surface commercials recently, and it appears they might be paying off.

Mmm. Credulicious.

Microsoft still isn’t providing sales numbers, but…

My boss said I had to write this up so here we are.

…the company claims “more people are switching from Macs to Surface than ever before.”

Two is more than one!

Microsoft cites “the disappointment of the new MacBook Pro” and its trade-in program for MacBooks for tempting people to switch to Surface.

They have jerky ad copy so it must be true. Has jerky ad copy ever lied to you? No, that was ad copy for beef jerky. That doesn’t count.


Again, Microsoft refuses to provide numbers…

There are literally no numbers in this piece. Not one.

Or two. Or any of the other numbers. None of them. Zero. Not that one, either.

It’s like the opposite of NumberWang in that there are no numbers but still exactly like NumberWang in that it’s still meaningless.

…but vaguely claims “our trade-in program for MacBooks was our best ever.”

Of course, Apple sometimes uses similar statistics. For example:

“Apple Has Received More Online Orders for New MacBook Pro Than Any Previous Generation.”

If they ever update the Mac Pro again they can say it’s “The Best-Selling Mac Pro In Years.”

But, yeah, it’s not just Microsoft. While Amazon didn’t invent the “giving no actual numbers to imply your numbers are rocketing up” move, they sure turned it into a… uh, well, not an art form, really. Just an annoying tic designed to make sales look terrific.

We can’t escape the wave of bogus statistics. All we can do is swim against it.

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