Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s VP of Office, Kirk Koenigsbauer, showed up on stage at an AppleInc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)event to the surprise of many during the unveiling of the new iPhones and iPad. As strange as the appearance may have been, you should actually expect Microsoft to make more of such appearances in the future.

Under CEO, Satya Nadella, Microsoft is trying to befriend everyone, which explains the company’s willing to share conference stage with rivals.

It was Apple’s chief marketer, Phil Schiller, who welcomed Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Koenigsbauer on stage. Unlike in 1997 when the audience somewhat booed when Bill Gates appeared at an Apple event via satellite, Koenigsbauer was applauded as he took to the stage.

The stark difference in the way Gates was received back then and what happened to Koenigsbauer this week highlight how much the relationship between the companies has improved.

Apple cites Microsoft’s productivity prowess

At the Apple event, Microsoft’s Koenigsbauer talked about the latest Office for the iPad Pro, the fewest in the iPad lineup. Before Koenigsbauer took to the stake to talk about Office, Apple’s Schiller had said that people at Microsoft know productivity.

The whole issue of Apple praising Microsoft’s productivity prowess and Microsoft making surprise appearance at an Apple event isn’t difficult to explain.

Better together

It seems that Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)and Apple have realized that they need each other to address their respective challenges. Apple is lacking on the productivity front and the company can tap into Microsoft’s ability to bolster its competitive advantage. Perhaps sharing the stage with Microsoft is something that Apple thought will go a long way to give credence to its workplace offerings among business buyers.

As for Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), the company lags behind in mobile. It appears that the company has figured out that making more of its products compatible with rival platforms can be a great way to overcome the mobile challenge.

Apple, given its influential position in the mobile space, is certainly an important partner to get close to, and Microsoft is doing that.

Sources: Fortune