Don't buy Microsoft (MSFT) Surface tablet

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Don't buy Microsoft (MSFT) Surface tablet

Consumer Reports is specifically stripping the 128GB and 256GB versions of the Surface Laptop and the 128GB and 512GB versions of the Surface Book of their coveted "recommended" status.

In a report issued today, Consumer Reports found that in a Survey of over 90 thousand laptops and tablets carried out over a period of two years, Microsoft Surface owners more were likely to run into problems at a rate which was higher than similarly priced competitors like Apple.

The Surface devices, a category that Microsoft created as the software giant entered the hardware market in 2012, are two-in-one products with a tablet and removable keyboard. Consumer Reports has pulled its recommendation for several Microsoft Surface laptops over concerns about the series' reliability and rate of breakdowns. The organization regularly surveys its readers and members about the products that they own and use.

"Microsoft's real-world return and support rates for past models differ significantly from Consumer Reports' breakage predictability", the firm said in a statement. The differences were "statistically significant", we're told, which is why Microsoft lost the "recommended" designation. It said that some Surface owners had reported startup problems, frozen machines, unexpected shutdowns or unresponsive touchscreens.

Building hardware is not a simple task and while Microsoft has had some experience in this segment with the Xbox and a few other devices, they are still relatively new to the game.

To get at reliability, the Consumer Reports National Research Center surveys our subscribers regularly. Within the Surface product family, Microsoft also sells the Surface Laptop, which features a traditional clamshell laptop design.

Though it shouldn't go down without a fight, Microsoft is up against some pretty stiff competition with this Consumer Reports study.

Still, the predicted reliability statistics, which are built on the survey responses, are important to users, the release said, and are a major factor in buying decisions.

Consumer Reports recently conducted a survey of almost 91,000 people who bought new laptops and tablets between 2014 and the beginning of 2017.

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