Earlier today, Consumer Reports announced that it was removing its recommendations for Microsoft's Surface line of devices, citing poor reliability after two years of use. This is a pretty big deal, and doesn't paint a very good picture for Microsoft.
The Consumer Reports survey results have been received with mixed response. While it is true that Surface devices in the past have suffered from reliability problems, Microsoft's new Surface products in 2017 have been much better. What's more, Microsoft itself says it disagrees with Consumer Reports findings.
Now, Surface lead Panos Panay has weighed in on the subject via an official blog post. Panay says Microsoft is confident that customer satisfaction from users who own a Surface Book or Surface Pro is high, citing 98 percent of users as satisfied. You can read the full response below:
The Surface Team's mission is and has always been to make devices that deliver great experiences to our customers and fans. It's the motivation for everything we do, and we are proud of the Surface devices we have built.
This is why today's Consumer Reports survey is disappointing. While we respect Consumer Reports, we disagree with their findings. Surface has had quite a journey over the last few years, and we've learned a lot. In the Surface team we track quality constantly, using metrics that include failure and return rates – both our predicted 1-2-year failure and actual return rates for Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book are significantly lower than 25 percent. Additionally, we track other indicators of quality such as incidents per unit (IPU), which have improved from generation to generation and are now at record lows of well below 1%.
Surface also ranks highly in customer satisfaction. 98% of Surface Pro 4 users and Surface Book users say they are satisfied with their device*, and our Surface Laptop and new Surface Pro continue to get rave reviews.
A part of being product makers is listening to our customers and pushing ourselves to evolve and improve with every generation of devices we create. We're forever seeking innovation, encouraging positive change. It's what we do, and what our customers do, but I can promise you one thing that will never change is our commitment to our customers and our dedication to ensuring your Surface experience only gets better.
Panay closes by reaffirming that Microsoft is proud of the Surface product line and that it stands firmly behind its quality and reliability. What are your thoughts on Consumer Reports results and Microsoft's response? Let us know.