Consumer Reports Warns About Microsoft Surface Reliability

Consumer Reports No Longer Recommends Surface Hardware

"While we respect Consumer Reports, we disagree with their findings", says Panos Panay, VP of Microsoft Devices.

From this month onwards Consumer Reports is removing the highly acclaimed "recommended" badge from Microsoft's full range of Surface PCs due to the hardware issues which have been reported by users and as Consumer Reports states make the Surface range "significantly less reliable than most other brands". It now estimates that "25 percent of Microsoft laptops and tablets will present their owners with problems by the end of the second year of ownership".

Consumer Reports was founded in 1936 and prides itself on being dedicated to unbiased product testing, consumer-oriented research and public education.

"Consumers tell us that reliability is a major factor when they're choosing a tablet or laptop", said Simon Slater, survey manager at Consumer Reports. But the biggest embarrassment, perhaps, was when New England Patriots Coach Bill Belichick went on an extended rant against the Surface late last season, noting that they were "just too undependable". Because Microsoft's defense is based on internal data, we can't verify that Surface products fare better in the wild than on paper.

Pannay concluded by saying that there has never been a better time to buy a Surface and the team is committed to ensure the Surface experience "only gets better". "It's not 100 percent perfect", the spokesman said of the publication's methodology.

A number of survey respondents said they experienced problems with their devices during startup.

Most reviews and real-life quality tests have also been kind to Microsoft's in-house computer hardware lineup, though it's not always relevant for the everyday consumer to simply run a few benchmarks, play some games, watch a couple of movies and move on to the next big thing. Specifically, the decision covers the 128 GB and 512 GB models of the Microsoft Surface Book and the 128 GB and 256 GB models of the Microsoft Surface Laptop. Surface Pro 3 owners had struggled through battery issues and overheating, while the Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book suffered screen flickering and their own power problems. Microsoft also began selling the enterprise-focused Surface Hub in 2015, an interactive whiteboard with screen sizes as large as 84 inches. Consumer Reports does qualify what it means by incidents in its report. Or is it "on the 11th of August 2017 between 11:00 PM and 11:01 PM, we checked and IPUs for are below 1%"? The firm lists as freezing, start up issues examples of issues which cause the demerits.

Consumer Reports is no stranger to controversy.

Microsoft isn't buying into CR's findings, either.

Microsoft has its own side of the story.

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