Feeds

Microsoft yanks Surface 2 DIM SCREEN of DEATH fix in update snafu

Better an overheating tablet than one with a borked screen, gambles Redmond

Boost IT visibility and business value

A software update supposed to stop Surface slabs overheating has been yanked by Microsoft – because it’s making matters worse.

Microsoft is pulling a December 10 firmware update for Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 and won’t re-issue another one for the over-heating issue until after Christmas.

Users who’d installed the patch had taken to Microsoft forums to complain of a variety of problems. These included Surfaces no longer charging properly, the battery draining and the machine spitting out false error messages. Others couldn’t install the update.

Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 devices were only released on October 21, so these were brand-new machines that were affected.

With Surfaces potentially going under Christmas trees this season, Microsoft seems to have made a calculated gamble that having a hot tab is better than one that’s handicapped. Two thousand Surface 2s have been shipped to the UK.

Microsoft said:

“To ensure the best experience for our customers during the holiday season, we have taken steps to remove the update for Surface Pro 2 that was previously published through Windows Update on December 10th, 2013. We are working to release an alternative update package after the holidays.

The update was released to fix the fact that some screens on both the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 had been dimming to the point of uselessness.

Microsoft attributed screen dimming to “extended, high CPU intensive actions – like gaming.” Not all machines were affected but it did span Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, despite the fact they use different architectures – ARM and Intel, respectively.

While gaming might seem like an exceptional use-case scenario for this problem, it’s a real concern for Microsoft. It’s trying to sell Surface as a part of the Xbox ecosystem, with the TV and console, capable of playing popular titles like Halo.

Other supposed features of the firmware update included decreased battery charging times, optimization of the two-finger touchpad and updated support for external displays.

It's the second update fumble for Microsoft on Surface 2. Last month Redmond issued an update that bricked the ARM-based Surface 2 as machines would only boot with the help of the BitLocker recovery key. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
Top Gun display for your CAR: Heads-up fighter pilot tech
Sadly Navdy kit doesn't include Sidewinder missile to blast traffic
FEAST YOUR EYES: Samsung's Galaxy Alpha has an 'entirely new appearance'
Wow, it looks like nothing else on the market, for sure
YES YES YES! Apple patents mousy, pressure-sensing iVibrator
Fanbois prepare to experience the great Cupertin-O
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
Things are looking up in Flappy Bird sequel
'Swing Copters' offers the same gameplay but in a different direction
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.