Which Is More Innovative, Apple or Microsoft?

Whatever else the iPad does, has it underscored Apple’s positioning as an innovator? Less than you might guess.

Conducted right after the iPad’s late-January unveiling, Rasmussen Reports polling asked respondents whether Apple or Microsoft is “more innovative with its product development.” Apple won, but with a mere plurality rather than a majority (43 percent). Even amid the hoopla about the iPad, Microsoft got 29 percent of the vote, with the remaining 28 percent unsure either way.

The gap was a bit wider when respondents were asked to say which of the two companies “does a better job in promoting its new products.” Forty-nine percent picked Apple, while 22 percent chose Microsoft and the remainder weren’t sure.