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Microsoft Staff Hide Their iPhones From Executives

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 8 comments

Roughly 10 percent of people at Microsoft own iPhones. While most of them aren't shy about their choice of cell phone, some of them hide or disguise their devices while they're at work.

Last September Steve Ballmer sent out a pretty clear message when he pretended to smash an employee's iPhone. Ballmer was reportedly running around, whooping, waving and shouting. When an employee tried to take his picture with an iPhone, the CEO took it from him, made some funny remarks while everyone else booed and then put it on the floor and pretended to stomp on it. The device was fine; Ballmer was just teasing after all. But how do iPhone-toting Microsofties feel about flashing their phones now?

This past weekend, the Wall Street Journal published a report about iPhone use at Microsoft's Redmond headquarters. Roughly 10 percent of Microsoft staff are said to be using Apple's iPhone and apparently, some of them go a long way to hide it.

WSJ reports that while many of them don't care who sees them tapping away on their iPhones in the lobby, the cafeteria or even the conference room, there are those who definitely don't want their devices being seen.

WSJ:

While rank-and-file workers tend to use the iPhone openly around peers, some conceal them within sight of more senior executives. One Microsoft worker said he knows several colleagues who try to disguise their iPhones with cases that make them look more like generic handsets.

"Maybe once a year I'm in a meeting with Steve Ballmer," said this employee. "It doesn't matter who's calling, I'm not answering my phone."

Though a few executives at Microsoft have said staff members often use rival products to better understand the competition, recent statements made by COO Kevin Turner counter their reasoning. Turner made it clear that "what's good for the field is good for Redmond." It seems Steve Ballmer agrees. If his aversion to iPhones was not made clear enough back in September, Ballmer echoed Turner's comments about company loyalty. Ballmer says that when he was growing up, his father worked for Ford, and his family always drove Fords.

Read the full story here.

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  • 0 Hide
    cj_online , 15 March 2010 20:04
    lol
  • 0 Hide
    ronanh , 15 March 2010 20:06
    If microsoft actually pay for their employees mobile phones they can have a say in what they use but there's no way that they should be allowed to have a say over what personal property employees are allowed to purchase with their wages. Are they also not supposed to use google or Linux???
  • 0 Hide
    ulysses35 , 15 March 2010 21:51
    Dont blame MS being pissed at their employees for using iphones, afterall there is no big secret and Intel & MS trying to dominate the market for PC's... just they dont seem to be able to do the same with the phone market.
  • 1 Hide
    JMcEntegart , 15 March 2010 22:03
    ronanhIf microsoft actually pay for their employees mobile phones they can have a say in what they use but there's no way that they should be allowed to have a say over what personal property employees are allowed to purchase with their wages. Are they also not supposed to use google or Linux???


    As far as I know they pay for Windows Mobile phones.
  • 0 Hide
    ronanh , 15 March 2010 22:06
    JMcEntegartAs far as I know they pay for Windows Mobile phones.

    If that's the case it's a bigger indictment of how poor the windows mobile phones are compared to iPhones...
  • 0 Hide
    malphas , 15 March 2010 22:28
    ronanhAre they also not supposed to use google or Linux???

    Uhm... yes, obviously.
  • 0 Hide
    Lewis57 , 15 March 2010 23:01
    Thats pretty stupid. Although i hate iphones and think droid totally kicks its ass, i don't think this is the way to behave.
  • 0 Hide
    codefuapprentice , 15 March 2010 23:25
    if i were one of those executives, i wouldn't really care what the employees use, so long as it doesn't get in the way of their work.
    they could have a Sony Vaio with ubuntu OS or a MacBook as examples for working on and i really wouldn't bat an eyelid.
    It's silly, in my opinion.