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No Fix in Sight for Surface Pro 3 Battery Drain

Surface Pro 3 users may have to wait indefinitely for a fix to a problem with the devices that appear to have even worse battery life than they had before a patch was released nearly a month ago, Microsoft is now indicating.

In a Microsoft forum post yesterday, a company official and moderator going by the name of "Greg" claimed that the Aug. 29 patch is not the cause of the degraded performance in its Surface Pro 3 systems and said the battery drain issue is only affecting "a limited number" of users. Yet that conflicts with the view of some users. "I am not understanding [Microsoft's] stance that the update did not cause the issues we are having," Jeremy Bronson stated in the forum. "Thousands of people did the updates and now have the problem."

The Surface Pro 3 I have can barely run 3 hours and that's in power-save mode with the brightness at only 25 percent. Moreover, the system has become more unstable to the point where I intend to reimage it. In his brief comment, Greg said fixing it is a priority. "Our team is actively looking in to the issue to determine the cause and identify a fix," he said.  "We will post an update as soon as we have more information to share."

That brief statement aside, Microsoft has largely kept Surface Pro 3 users in the dark about this problem for some time and in his latest Redmond magazine Windows Insider column, Ed Bott made his position clear on the company's handling of the situation (see "Shame on Microsoft for Leaving Surface Pro Users in the Dark"). Bott described Microsoft's response, or lack thereof, as the latest example of the company shying away from problems rather than addressing them. Other examples, he noted, include Microsoft's finally aborted "Get Windows 10" campaign and complaints about privacy policies in the new OS. Bott wants to know:

Why the consistently timid response? Part of the reason might be the corporate equivalent of the Miranda rule: As several generations of Microsoft executives will testify, anything you say can and will be held against you -- by antitrust officials, publicity-happy state regulators and a clickbait-driven tech press.

Bott argues it's not that Microsoft is incapable of communicating, the company hides from conflict by choice:

Microsoft certainly knows how to communicate. On the nuts and bolts of product design and implementation, the company is incredibly forthcoming in its communications, with an overwhelming number of blogs and Knowledge Base articles documenting even the tiniest of details.

The company did promise to keep us in the loop, and of course we'll share whatever we learn, hopefully sooner than later.

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 09/23/2016 at 12:27 PM


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