Reviewers Slam Surface Pro for Poor Battery Life, High Cost

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AFDozerman

God, is this the same surface that Microsoft locked its engineers in a bunker and didn't let them out until the product was announced?

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Penterax

Why such a focus on the negative?

Reviewers might complain about the price and battery life (which is really only terrible compared to a tablet, and if you want a pure tablet you aren't in the market for a Surface anyway), but they praise it in every other way. It's an awesome device that gives the user a new level of experience in quality.

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Electrik

"I think Microsoft getting involved in the hardware business is designed to promote Windows 8."

I think Microsoft getting involved in the hardware business is designed to promote upcoming Microsoft computers using Dell's gigantic manufacturing base.

What's in a brand, nowadays? Foxxcon cranks out Iphones on one floor and other brands on the next. As long as Dell stockholders get their dividends, what do they care?

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Paper Jam

Here's my two cents, and I think it sums up what others here are thinking.

The unified OS approach that MS is taking is too much, to soon. The Metro UI should be optional (without hacks and third party software) on non-touch devices.

Windows RT and WP8 should be one OS, perhaps called Surface OS, but I really think it shouldn't be called Windows. Metro is a drastic departure from the Windows we all know. It looks like a smartphone OS stretched to fit a large screen.

And x86 hardware isn't yet energy efficient enough for the tablet form factor, and as such only offers limited appeal for full-fledged Windows applications. Some may like it, but most will probably opt for a much cheaper laptop or an ARM based tablet with better battery life.

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Bullwinkle J Moose

A few months back we were all reading how the power saving features were so vastly improved in Windows 8

Now we are reading how the power saving features of the surface pro sucks with Windows 8

Try running this sleep command on an XP, Vista or Windows 7 machine>

%windir%\System32\rundll32.exe powrprof.dll,SetSuspendState

Then compare the wattage used in sleep state to the sleep state in Windows 8 (On the same machine)

Now compare the power used while playing the same movie in Windows 8 and in any other O.S. listed above

Are we saving any power yet?

In other words...
Before we blame the hardware, lets see if we are getting all those power saving benefits we were promised by the new O.S.

Also,
Are you saving more power with a fresh O.S. install of Windows 8 than you are with all your software installed?

How much can you save by disabling all the active tiles from constantly accessing the Internet?

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Hilarity

Why bother? $1K will get me a decent 15" i7 laptop (although since laptops are throwaways nowadays I don't spend over 400). This whole tablet fad is utter rubbish. Windows is a workhorse OS, its not a shiny toy like iOS and Android. Never will be no matter what Microsoft tries.

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Baer

I had a few hours with one yesterday. My present tablet does not do many things I want but the Pro lets me load any windows program. It is slightly thicker than the Rt but I had to look at them side by side to tell that. Also when looking at how much room is left on the drive I discovered that there is a full version of Office 2013 already on the drive as well as a restore file. Yes you have to buy a license but the point is that is something that is already loaded and will not use any more space on the drive. If you do not want Office I guess you could remove it and gain some storage back.
Anyway, it is fast and complete and will let me take a light compact device with me instead of having to carry both a notebook and a tablet. To me this is a Tablet that will do real work instead of just a display device.
I reserved one for Saturday morning pick up. I am sure I will have more opinions by Monday.

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Panwo1

You shouldn't have to buy MS Office. Is should come for free just like it does on the iPad and the Android tablets. FAIL !!!! /s

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Baer

Full REAL Office comes free on iPads and Droids?? Whatrusmokin?

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r3dd4wg

I bet the battery life is as long as the commercial.

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TheRyGuy

If the Surface Pro survives until Haswell comes out, I think that chip could help with the battery life. Then again, what do you expect with a fully-fledged Core i5 processor? I think it shows promise on design, why stop at conventional laptops and tablets? I agree it should have a micro SD slot and replaceable battery. You never know if it works until you try it! If I had one, it'd probably bench my laptop until I'd like to game. 2 lbs vs almost 9 lbs is hard to argue with.

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DoctorX

i am not surprised. I played with rt and decided it was way too complicated compared to android. I dont see how pro would had been any different. I believe MS should have fired balmer can co and took it a different direction. Now for a short time, my son had a nokia with win ph 8 and it was actually nice. it was much better than wp7... I feel that wp8 should had been the tablet interface and left the desktop/laptop alone.

I have since reinstalled win8, (after finding out what was causing it to crash), but i disabled uac and killed metro. OK, this is where it gets weird. My pc sped up noticeably after that. I dont get it. FAst and stable now with start8. Why oh why did not ms just make metro optional???!!?!?!

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Panwo1

Just a little correction. You didn't use Windows RT. You installed a version of Windows 8 which has the Metro start screen. I am going to make an assumption here as well and that is that you installed it on any existing computer that does not have a touch screen.

So you are comparing the Surface Pro which is a touch screen device with your experience on Windows RT (which isn't Windows RT) on a legacy device like a laptop or a desktop without a touch screen. Not a fair comparison because the user experience is very different. Touchscreen users give much higher ratings than the keyboard and shortcut crowd.

I will say one thing in your favor though, MS failed by not providing out of the box videos, apps and instructions for navigation for the new OS. Once people take the time to learn the keyboard shortcuts and the mouse clicks the interface is not so bad. Those with touchscreen need even less instruction but those of us like you and I who upgraded older machines, need to learn new ways to navigate.

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jgottberg

Out of curiosity, what was more complicated a task on the Surface Pro than on Android?

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fung0

I can answer that. Constantly flipping between Metro and the desktop. (Copy a file from Metro? Nope, sorry. Start a program from the desktop? Nope... back to Metro you go.) Constantly having to log in with a password. (You can use a picture password, but enabling it requires typing in your complex text password.) Playing with not one but THREE versions of the Control Panel (Charms from Metro, Charms from the desktop, and the standard full Windows version). Start tiles that have a mind of their own, and can't simply be placed like Android icons. Etc.

PLUS all the things that make the Windows desktop more complex (and, admittedly, more powerful) than a tablet OS.

I'll echo what others are saying: there are some good ideas in Metro, but this should definitely have been two OSes. Cramming them together was a recipe for confusion and frustration. Not to mention the exact opposite of "no-compromise computing."

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jgottberg

I totally get that and it's my biggest gripe as well. I am using a Surface RT and have a desktop with it installed with dual monitors. The Metro UI does work awesome in the dual monitor setup. Metro stays on one side and apps launched from it that require the desktop, launch over there. That eliminates some of the confusion.

I just wished they would allow an app that launches from Metro to be launched like an iPad app does and not bounce you out to a desktop.

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D1RTYD1Z619

Like I said from the beginning,it needed to have a swapable battery and an sd or micro sd slot for it to be successful.

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someuid

It is pretty clear that Windows 8 is an OS designed only for heavy duty gear. It is not iOS, it is not Android, and it isn't meant for anything smaller than a laptop.

Windows 8 is a huge gorilla (install footprint, need for AV software, patches and reboots, legacy software) in a ballerina costume (Modern UI.)

Microsoft: go back to the drawing board. Give us Win8 for phones, Win8 for tablets, Win8 for desktops, and add/remove features as needed to support the hardware (and make Modern UI OPTIONAL ON DESKTOPS AND LAPTOPS.) All this home, pro, enterprise stuff is old and pointless these days. No one else brands their OS by purpose, neither should you.

And drop the price to $20 for a full copy. Enough of this pointless upgrade stuff. Again, no one else is doing it that way.

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fung0

Gorilla in a ballerina costume... good one! I'll never be able to look at those silly flashing tiles without seeing that image.

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HiGHRoLLeR038

Has Maxpc reviewed the surface pro yet?

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joshnorem

Not yet, hopefully soon. 

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agello24

they would have made out better using the AMD chips instead of intel.

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Baer

Why, just price?

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Panwo1

Price and power usage

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vkt62

I don't get it. It has its problems, but how hard is it for Microsoft to market it as a PC powered tablet or that it has multiple user login options unlike the other tablets or that it can be used as a tablet or a pc. It is a pretty good system for the form factor.

I am not a big fan of windows 8 and the surface pro doesn't have gps or 3g chip but I still don't understand why microsoft doesn't just admit that the ssd space is an issue but tell us why and give us the benefits of the system.

They should start rethinking they marketing strategy for their products.

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Neufeldt2002

I predict that there will be the standard Hate in this comment section followed by the those that are in love with it trying to defend their mistresses honor.

On the review side of this article, well, it really doesn't surprise me that they are coming out this way. The honeymoon is over, and people are realizing that as good as a unified experience may be, it is actually very hard to pull off.

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