Saturday, January 04, 2014

Support staff tells customers Surface Pro 2 fix coming on Jan. 14

Some long-suffering Surface Pro 2 tablet owners have been waiting and waiting and waiting for Microsoft to provide a fix after a botched firmware release on Dec. 10. It appears, if a Friday post on a Microsoft support forum is correct.

The post, by a user named “Jackabite," said the following:
Just got off a call with Surface support team and they confirmed that the new firmware will be released January 14th. Interesting the support team have been told by Microsoft that the botched December firmware only affected 3 in 1000 devices, needless to say I nearly fell off my chair when they said that!
The reaction at the support site over the claim that only three out of every 1,000 devices were affected by the bad firmware -- which was eventually pulled by the Redmond, Wash.-based giant.

Microsoft has not exactly endeared itself to Surface Pro 2 owners. There is this issue, and prior to that, it was discovered that the factory restore image shipped on the tablet does not include some necessary drivers, meaning that if user hard resets his device back to the default, it's missing some drivers and does not operate properly. A manual workaround was discovered that worked for some, though not all.

Meanwhile, the Dec. 10 firmware update caused overheating, issues with devices waking up when put to sleep -- or in some cases, when they were shut down -- and more.

After pulling the firmware, it was rumored that Microsoft was going to hold back an update until the next Patch Tuesday. That uproar was reduced when Microsoft later said that developers were working over the holidays for a fix. Of course, anyone familiar with the Patch Tuesday cycle will recognize that Jan. 14 is in fact, Patch Tuesday, so Microsoft managed to keep the schedule it wanted to.

In addition to angering folks over those other two issues, Microsoft also quietly updated the Surface Pro 2 processor from the one it originally shipped with, just two months ago. Replacement tablets and new shipments are coming with an Intel Core i5 4300U CPU clocked at 1.9Ghz instead of the initial Intel Core i5 4200U at 1.6Ghz.

While the change itself is actually minimal, considering the recent FUBARs by Microsoft with the SP2, it has not been received well, with some in the same support thread as above expressing anger at Microsoft.

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