Microsoft is pushing out a firmware update for the Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 aimed at resolving the power and performance issues that have plagued the devices since their October launch.

According to a Windows blog post, a set of Microsoft and Intel driver and firmware updates will be waiting for you when you check for new software on your device. This will be welcome news for Surface owners, who have had to manage battery drain problems, sleep issues and overheating when placed in an ultra-low power mode.

A Whole Lotta Updates

While power management and driver issues are nothing new for Windows, these particular problems have vexed consumers because Microsoft is responsible for both the hardware and software of the Surface line.

The full list of updates is quite lengthy: Microsoft has published all the details on a dedicated help page for the Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book.

I’ve been among the many affected by these issues, with my Surface Pro 4 suffering pitiful battery life and difficulty waking from sleep. Others have reported problems with Wi-Fi connectivity, display driver compatibility and the previously-mentioned heat issues.

They’ve marred what are otherwise reliable devices. I’ve found the Surface Pro 4 to be a generally dependable companion, with zippy performance and a travel-friendly form factor. The pen input makes the Surface ideal for note-taking, design work or marking up reports. 

Learning Opportunities

Enterprise deployment is clearly on Microsoft’s mind, as the Surface Pen helps OneNote and other Office software stand apart from the OS X counterparts.

High Stakes for Flagship Hardware

Microsoft certainly hopes this closes this saga with its top-of-the-line devices. The Surface Pro 4 has been gaining a lot of traction with business users given the device’s flexibility with the tablet form factor and desktop experience offered by Windows 10.

However, no device with a pitiful battery life will win anyone's loyalty. Microsoft is seeking to replicate the Apple experience, where the integration of hardware and software typically brings about a consumer experience. But consumers (and business users) expect more from such high-end devices that promise to be a boon for one’s productivity.

If you have a Surface Pro 4 or Surface Book, let us know in the comments what your experience has been with the latest software updates.

Title image "Flyswatter" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by  Ultra-lab