Lenovo executives say that Microsoft approached the company to sell the Surface Pro 3, but the Chinese PC maker refused the offer.

During the Canalys Channels Forum, which took place from Oct. 6 to Oct.8 this year in Barcelona, Gianfranco Lanci, the president and COO of Lenovo, told attendees that he refused Microsoft's offer to sell the Surface Pro in 2014.

"I said no to resell their product," said Lanci. Microsoft "asked me more than one year ago, and I said no I don't see any reason why I should sell a product from, within brackets, competition."

While Lenovo rejected Microsoft's offer other PC makers such as Dell and Hewlett Packard (HP) have entered into a partnership with Microsoft to sell Surface tablets. On Sept. 8 this year, Microsoft announced that from early October 2015, Dell will start selling Surface Pro tablets as well as its accessories in Canada and the U.S. via its North America commercial sales organization and later from Dell.com/Work.

Surface Pro tablets sold via Dell will also offer customers the option of Dell Services, which includes Dell Hardware Warranty for up to four years, Configuration and Deployment Services and ProSupport with Accidental Damage Service.

"Together with Microsoft, we are giving our customers great products, including Surface, with the best sales, service and support in the world," said Michael Dell, chairman and CEO of Dell.

However, Dion Weisler, the Executive Vice President of HP's Printing and Personal Systems organization, hinted that the company is not particularly thrilled with the Microsoft partnership.

Sales people at HP will not get any commission on sales executed for Surface Pro tablets. Weisler says that support and service of Surface Pro tablets will not be company's first preference but HP will offer support and service if customers insist.

Microsoft has launched the fourth-generation Surface Pro 4 that packs in top-end features. The tablet will be available from Oct. 26 this year and is expected to give stiff competition to other tablets. A partnership with Dell and HP may help in boosting sales of the latest Microsoft tablet, but it remains to be seen how it affects the sales of partner products from HP and Dell.

Photo: Cory M. Grenier | Flickr

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