For those who are unaware, there’s this guy that goes by the name Peter Thurrot. It might be his real name; it might not be. It seems like a name that’s a bit catch-all to me, but that might be because my last name is so friggin unusual. Mr. Thurrot is kind of a big deal in the world of Microsoft. He doesn’t say or do all that much but when he does it usually comes out with a bang. He’s the type that likes to let everyone know how great a writer he is and how much experience he has and when you read his works it reeks of arrogance.
Mr. Thurrott annoyed me a bit earlier today when he decided to go on a rant about how the recent reports of Microsoft Surface devices not being any good were likely true because the Redmond guys don’t have much experience in the world of making devices—so it would’ve taken a fool to have bought one while Microsoft was in their trial period of creating devices, or something like that.
According to Mr. Thurrot, the Surface line of devices all the way from the original Surface Pro and Surface RT to the newer Surface Book and even laptop have collectively received so many complaints about reliability that some experts are warning not to spend your money on any Surface. Consumer Reports—an apparent big name in the industry of checking things before you buy them that I’ve never personally heard about nor bothered to check out before making a purchase—says that after doing a recent survey, including many of whom own Surface devices, the Surface lineup had so many complaints about reliability that they are no longer fit to be seen on the website that’s sole purpose sounds like was to check out whether something or not was reliable.
The report doesn’t conclude whether Thurrott uses any Surface products himself, but by the way he shows no reluctance to join in and slain the Surface name and acts as if the reports are probably true, it sounds like he doesn’t because if he did he’d understand how the reports are overblown and by a long way.
I’ve been the happy owner of three Microsoft Surface devices now. According to the Consumer Report survey, 25% of people complained about reliability issues, making it the worse manufacturer of laptops regarding the complaint to no complaints ratio. That will make me fall into the other 75% or owners if the results of the survey are true because my experiences with Surface devices have been fantastic.
I can already hear what you’re saying: But you can’t speak for everybody, who are you to say that what others experience is wrong and what you know from your piddly three devices is true? The thing is if Thurrott bothered to read the report about what the people were classifying as unreliable, which he just so happens to leave out of his report altogether, he’d know that the only complaints were related to freezes and touchscreen issues. I’ve experienced both of those things, and don’t consider them a problem anymore.
Back in the day when Windows 10 was newer, my Surface tablets would freeze quite a bit. I initially thought it was freezing because of a lack of processing power, but those freezes have since gone away. Now my train of thought is more along the lines of Windows 10 software being to blame—there were always some websites that were prone to getting freezes which also made me think it was more software related right from the get-go. And if your Surface that runs on Windows 10 does freeze on you all you need to do is hold down the Power button for ten seconds, wait for the OS to reset and then start using it again. It never fails. Most people who complain about freezing as a Surface-related issue to the point where they complain about it on surveys do so because they had an experience where they couldn’t work out how to unfreeze it, and it then became a huge deal. Use Google, my friends. It isn’t that difficult. Entering phrases like “How to unfreeze my Surface” are all you need to research.
The touchscreen problems you get with the Surface are also common and easy to fix. While it wouldn’t be fair to conclude everyone touchscreen issues are as simple as what I’m about to say, there’s no doubt in my mind that the vast majority of cases will be directly related. The way the Surface screens detach from the keyboards is done by a small series of connector pins. These pins have caused some issues; I’ll be the first to admit. But they have also gotten better over the years, now that we are well into the fourth generation of Surface Pro devices—for the Surface Book and laptop, these pins aren’t an issue at all. If those pins don’t stay clean, it can lead to the touchscreen not working. All you need to do is put some water on a clean cloth and wipe the connector pins, and it’ll start working again.
The point is that sadly Microsoft Surface devices have gotten a media spray today for being terribly unreliable devices that people should stay away from. Those opinions are being thrown around either by competitors to hurt Microsoft or just morons who don’t know what they are talking about. The type of device you want to stay away from is the device that’s keyboard falls apart, hardware stops working and that you need to send it away for a new part to be added because it no longer worked. The occasional hiccup in a Surface device that has otherwise proved flawless and very well built is not the type of device you need to worry about. Other than those two issues, the troubleshooting requirements have been minimal for the Surface range from both my experience and my research or finding out what are known problems and what are problems that Microsoft has given troubleshooting tips for, since those are written up to help the problem in need of them and are written because they are known issues. Problems with software were always going to happen when Windows 10 first came out, it happens after every major software release, and it’s not just Microsoft’s software, it’s everyone’s, including that mobile software you use as well. My original Surface RT that I eventually replaced with a Surface Pro because it was underpowered for what I needed it for is still going strong today and has shown no signs or not working. My original Surface Pro is still a great device that I use more like a computer than a tablet (remember they were mainly designed to be used as tablets and light web browsing) and my Surface Book that I’ve owned now for nearly a year has been the most amazing experience of my life—no other laptop has come close to being as loved as the Surface Book. Don’t shy away from buying any of these devices just because a bunch of media clowns and gangs of nerds who don’t even use them decide to write up reports badmouthing the Surface lineup just because of a few stats that were submitted by tech noobs. That’s not smart.
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