It's no great insight to say Microsoft needs to make a splash in the mobile market to stay relevant over the long-term. And in the next chapter of this storyline, the Redmond software giant will finally introduce its long-awaited Surface tablet this month. However, Microsoft's taking several largely unconventional steps in the Surface that could come back to haunt eventually haunt the company.

Andrew Tonner owns shares of Apple. Follow Andrew and all his writing on Twitter: @AndrewTonnerThe Motley Fool owns shares of Apple,, Google, and Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend, Apple, and Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.