Nonetheless, with the contentious history of the Surface line and long-term reliability, one would be hard-pressed to fault Consumer Reports for not awarding the Surface Laptop "Laptop of the Year" just yet.
Microsoft is new to the hardware business and has generally been met with favorable reviews of its laptops from consumers and pundits in the industry. Due to these issues throughout the year, Consumer Reports has today withdrawn all Microsoft Surface devices from their "recommended" status for devices.
To judge reliability, Consumer Reports surveys its subscribers about the products they own and use. "Laptops and tablets ... made by Microsoft were significantly less reliable than most other brands". The differences were "statistically significant", we're told, which is why Microsoft lost the "recommended" designation. Others said the touch screen was not responsive enough or that the devices froze or shut off unexpectedly.
In a statement to Reuters, Microsoft (of course) came out swinging, saying that their return rates and customer support rates differ greatly from what Consumer Reports survey found.
However, Microsoft told CNN Tech it doesn't believe the findings accurately reflect Surface owners' "true experiences".
When Microsoft held an event previous year, everybody thought that they were going to announce the Microsoft Surface Smartphone but that did not happen. Within the Surface product family, Microsoft also sells the Surface Laptop, which features a traditional clamshell laptop design.
Consumer Reports has conducted its annual reliability study since 1952, starting with cars.
In earlier lab tests that measure factors such as display quality, battery life, speed and ergonomics, Surface devices were ranked highly by Consumer Reports. It appears that they have briefed a few news outlets, and Microsoft, ahead of publication. This year we looked at more than 90,000 responses from subscribers about laptops and tablets that they had bought.