Microsoft Readies Patch For Surface Pro 3 Battery Problem

Microsoft says an issue affecting the Surface Pro 3 is related to the hardware – not the software – and is working on a fix.

The company made the admission of the lower than expected battery capacity in a post by one of its engineers on a support website.

“Thanks for your patience as we’ve worked though the details here,” said the Microsoft engineer in response to a user’s complaint that his Surface was only lasting 30 minutes on a full charge. Other users have complained that the battery capacity dropped almost immediately to 80 percent, despite having been fully charged.

Battery Problem

“We can now confirm that this Surface Pro 3 battery capacity question is not a hardware issue, but one that can be addressed with a software update,” wrote the Microsoft engineer.

“Our team has been working on, and is now testing, an update that will address this. We’ll publish the update as soon as it has passed our quality assurance process. For now, you should not consider replacing your device as an update is pending.”

But that will do little to placate those users who had already opted to replace their device with another Surface Pro, a process that can cost more than $450 (£340).

The fact that this move is unnecessary, as the problem is software related, will prompt many to question whether Microsoft intends to pay compensation to those users.

Good, But Pricey

This is not the first time that Microsoft will have released a firmware update to extend the battery life of its Surface Pro devices.

Back in 2013 for example, Microsoft released a firmware update that allowed its Marvell Wi-Fi components on the Surface Pro 2 to enter into lower power states, which stretched the tablet’s battery life.

Battery issues aide, the Surface Pro has been well received by reviewers and the general public, thanks to its hybrid design as a cross between a laptop and a tablet. Redmond’s latest machine, the Surface Pro 4 was released earlier this year.

Despite the good reviews however, there is no escaping it is an expensive device. A mid range Surface Pro 4 that comes with an Intel i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, will cost you £759 in the UK.

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Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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