Surfacegate

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 4' started by GreyFox7, Jan 22, 2016.

  1. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Microsoft is having its iPhone 4 “Antennagate” moment, thanks to rampant reliability issues with its Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 devices. But rather than publicly face the problems head-on, the software giant has retreated behind a veil of silence. This is a huge mistake, and it is undermining the credibility and viability of its hardware offerings.

    (No those support forum postings don't count. Explained in the full text)

    Welcome to Surfacegate - Thurrott.com

    Thurrott: "Microsoft, you’re f@#$ing up. Big time."

    Antennagate threatened to undermine the success of the best-received iPhone yet, a product that has grown to be Apple’s most successful by far. (So much so, in fact, one might argue that Apple is basically just an iPhone company.) So Jobs did the right thing, though again he was bullshitting: He addressed the problem head-on, and publicly, explained what was happening, explained why everything would be OK, and offered customers real solutions.

    I can quibble with the explanation, but I can’t quibble with the results: Virtually no one returned their iPhone 4 for a refund, and this iPhone-happy world simply accepted less reliable cell signals as a way of life. (Future iPhone designs, including the iPhone 4 for Verizon, which shipped in 2011, featured ongoing but mostly secret changes to the antenna system, which improved matters in subsequent devices too.)

    OK, I assume most of you remember Antennagate. But what I want you to understand is that the problems Microsoft is now having with Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 is the same thing. This is Microsoft’s Antennagate. And their response so far is unacceptable.

    Here’s what Microsoft has done so far.

    Nothing.

    In real world terms, they’ve done absolutely nothing: Microsoft has maintained complete radio silence on the rampant reliability issues that dog Surface Book and Surface Pro 4. There has been no press release. No blog post. No press event. No web video. No letter to customers. Nothing.

    If, however, you were wasting hours in Microsoft’s support forums looking for help, you may have stumbled on two items of note.

    In early December, a Surface Engineering Team program manager explained one of the big issues with the new devices.

    “We can put the processor into a deeper sleep state than it is currently set to,” he wrote, before stepping right into it. “We couldn’t do it at RTM for a variety of reasons, power management is a very hard computer science problem to solve especially with new silicon. Currently it is not in the deepest ‘sleep’ that it can be so there are wake events that would not otherwise wake it. We will have an update for this issue sometime soon in the new year.

    And then a week later, in a similarly hidden place in Microsoft’s support forums, the Surface team issued an apology. Which is like shouting into the wind, because no one even knew about it.

    “For those of you who’ve had a less-than-perfect experience, we’re sorry for any frustration this has caused,” the note reads. “We are working to issue additional updates and fixes as soon as possible to further improve the overall Surface experience.”

    It’s been over a month since those missives, of which virtually no Surface Book or Pro 4 customers are even aware. Realistically speaking, Microsoft has been silent on the issues. One can only imagine that the return rate on these devices is off the charts. But the bigger concern is the long-term harm that Microsoft does by remaining silent every single day. Hiding and ignoring the problem is not the same as solving it.
    Put Terry Myerson, or Panos Panay, or Terry Myerson and Panos Panay up on a stage (in person or on video) and then walk us through the problem. Explain how excited you were to be first of the gate with Intel Skylake hardware, and why some of the problems you’re seeing are common to other PCs, and why some are not. Explain when you knew about these problems, and what you’ve been doing, and what you will do going forward, to fix them. And when. Offer Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 customers a warranty extension of at least 6 months, or from the date when these problems will be fixed, whichever is longer. And then start heaping on the gifts, because you can never really make this right: Free Microsoft Complete on top of that warranty extension, perhaps. A year of the Office 365 of your choice. Something.

    Most important, Microsoft, tell us that you WILL fix these problems, that they are just a perfect storm of glitches in new hardware and new software and that there is nothing there to suggest that Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 are irreparably broken. These are beautiful and expensive devices. But our faith is shaken.

    You can’t just talk about trust, Microsoft. You have to establish and keep trust. And silence will not achieve that.
     
  2. jrioux

    jrioux Active Member

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    So you're saying that MS is acting just like Apple... ignoring problems as long as possible and then doing something when and if they're finally forced to do something???
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2016
  3. InspectHerGadget

    InspectHerGadget Active Member

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    I remember the same posts about the SP3. The problems didn't affect everyone and the same with the SP4.

    The Surface Book though definitely has been universally panned for bugs.

    They've released a big fix yesterday evidently.
     
  4. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Well if it wasn't clear this is all from the linked Thurrott article.

    However, I don't think he's saying MS is acting like Apple because he's asking/telling them to act like Apple. I thought he was pretty clear about that. Regardless it's not about Apple and he could just as well have left that reference out or made another company reference. In a nutshell he's saying; by not communicating Microsoft, you’re f@#$ing up. Big time!
     
  5. jrioux

    jrioux Active Member

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    I agree that Microsoft is f@#$ing up. Big time! But I also contend that Microsoft is currently acting JUST LIKE Apple.
    It took two years and a class action lawsuit before Apple acknowledged and offered compensation for “Antennagate.”
    www.cnn.com/2012/02/20/tech/mobile/iphone-4-antenna-settlement
    Apple also behaved the same irresponsible way with "Staingate" and didn't do the right thing until faced with another lawsuit.
    www.geek.com/apple/apple-is-ignoring-a-major-problem-with-macbook-screen-stains-1618314
    I want Microsoft to be a more responsible corporate citizen than Apple. They should not do the same old sh!t as Apple.
     
  6. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    Unlike Apple, MS has admitted to the issues and is addressing them...
     
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  7. macmee

    macmee Active Member

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    I've owned a bunch of Apple products and a bunch of Microsoft products and I always have many more issues with my microsoft products than I do my apple products.
     
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  8. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Hmm, there's a fairly interesting discussion on reddit regarding this topic but nothing here save the typical Apple crap. This isn't about Apple. It's about who should be communicating what.
     
  9. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    With the distinction Paul T. and Grey are attempting, Apple never owned up to the issues until their was a lawsuit and time had past. MS has been communicative through their official support channels and even though it wasn't popular, in December said they were working on the fix but it wouldn't be ready until 2016.

    Apple has had it share of issue with hardware, but as a completely walled garden they have complete control and do not support backwards compatibility. There are advantages with their model but you sacrifice flexibility that is a decision you need to chose.
     
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  10. InspectHerGadget

    InspectHerGadget Active Member

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    I suppose it can turn into an Apple versus Microsoft bash but I agree too. Apple have their moments though but I can't recall them releasing products such as the Surface Book which had just so many issues. I'm not so sure about the SP4 but lots of people here seem to have had issues with that as well. I did have wireless issues for quite a long period of time though with a MBA 11 mid 2013. They eventually fixed that and it was a software bug that took over a year to fix. Over the years though their track record has been impressive so Microsoft certainly need to do more testing before releasing products. Neither company is blameless.
     
  11. macmee

    macmee Active Member

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    Apple is also crap at handling user problems (the macbook graphics card lawsuit being a great example)

    but it's much more rare to see apple screw up. Windows machines sell because they're cheap. Apple machines sell (at outrageous prices) because they're not pieces of s**t.

    Also if my rImac or rMBP break I can just send it back to apple with applecare and get a new fixed device. I could exchange my surface 5 times and I'd still have problems because I think every surface is plagued with some of these hilariously trivial issues.

    think about it this way: we're on the 4th iteration of the surface and Microsoft still has no idea what the hell they're doing in terms of power management software. Also, my netbook from 2007 has more reliable wifi. And for that, I think we deserve an apology.
     
  12. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    IMU there were fairly significant changes introduced with Skylake with respect to power management so anything you did before you can pretty much throw out as this is a completely different kind of animal.

    IDC what Apple does, has done, will do; it just doesn't concern me.

    I suppose if we can accept that a support forum post from what would typically be classified as, a person not authorized to speak, is Microsoft's Official response we'll just close this case as nobody gives rats ass. We should tell Paul Thurrott he's wasting his digital ink and may as well go pound sand because even deaf ears are tuning him out.

    The xxx-gate is and has always been about how you handle messes, not the mess itself. The mess has it's own consequences but how you handle the mess defines you.
     

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