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Microsoft has tried a number of tactics to get the Apple faithful to switch over from iPads and MacBooks to their Surface tablets (which were partly meant to kill both markets with one stone), and so far it's failed rather dismally. But now the company is attempting to one of the most direct routes to winning your hearts — bring in your MacBook Air, and they'll give you a wad of store credit to put toward a Surface Pro 3.
You've got to give them credit for determination. Microsoft is offering a whopping $650 for the trade-in, which means that you'll only have to pay around $150 if you go for the Surface Pro 3 starter model that's priced at $799. There's just one problem. The starter Surface isn't anywhere near as powerful as the MacBook Air, which means you'll end up paying significantly more to acquire a Microsoft machine with the same performance.
You can also only trade in the units at a Microsoft store according to the terms, and the money you'll get depends on the condition of the MacBook Air. (Amusingly enough, this suggests that they want to sell them themselves in some form somewhere down the line.) At the very least, you should be able to turn your MacBook Air on and off, and cracked screens and water damage are out of the question.
The trade-in news comes in on the heels of Microsoft's big announcement of the Surface Pro 3 last month, during which the presenters took advantage of almost every opportunity to compare the 12-inch device to Apple's iPad and MacBooks. Apple products were such a focus of the event that, at one point, a 13-inch MacBook Air was physically weighed next to an 800g Surface Pro 3.
Follow this article's writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.