Con­sumer Re­ports rec­om­mends Mi­crosoft Sur­face lap­tops again

USA TODAY Weekend Extra - - TECH - Ed­ward C. Baig

Con­sumer Re­ports is restor­ing its cov­eted “rec­om­men­da­tion” des­ig­na­tion for Mi­crosoft Sur­face lap­tops that it pulled in Au­gust 2017.

At the time, Con­sumer Re­ports said the “pre­dicted re­li­a­bil­ity” of the Mi­crosoft ma­chines com­pared to most other brands was worse by a “sta­tis­ti­cally sig­nif­i­cant mar­gin.”

The or­ga­ni­za­tion now in­di­cates that Mi­crosoft’s older mod­els, in­clud­ing the Sur­face Pro, Sur­face Lap­top and Sur­face Book 2, scored well enough to be rec­om­mended. One im­por­tant change that af­fected Con­sumer Re­ports’ de­ci­sion is that the ma­chines were tested and rated as lap­tops, whereas a year ago some mod­els were eval­u­ated as lap­tops, some as tablets.

The re­li­a­bil­ity eval­u­a­tions based on mem­ber­ship sur­veys.

While Mi­crosoft will pre­sum­ably cheer this lat­est de­vel­op­ment with the older com­put­ers – it didn’t im­me­di­ately com­ment on the find­ings – it won’t be pleased that the Sur­face Go, which was in­tro­duced in July for $399 and up, was not rec­om­mended.

Con­sumer Re­ports said its “per­for­mance falls short be­low what con­sumers can find in other lap­tops.”

If there’s a small sil­ver lin­ing here, are it’s that Con­sumer Re­ports said Mi­crosoft wasn’t alone on that met­ric, with a num­ber of other 10and 11-inch lap­tops also ex­hibit­ing rel­a­tively weak pro­cess­ing power.

In fact, Con­sumer Re­ports rec­om­mended only two mod­els out of 10 in that size cat­e­gory:

❚ The Sam­sung Gal­axy Book 10.6 (64GB).

❚ The Acer Spin 1 SP111-31-C2W3. Mean­while, Mi­crosoft is ex­pected to un­veil new Sur­face com­put­ers at a press event Tues­day.

Whether these lat­est en­tries even­tu­ally earn Con­sumer Re­ports’ en­dorse­ment is some­thing to keep an eye on months from now.

MI­CROSOFT

The score for the Mi­crosoft Sur­face Book 2 lap­top has im­proved.

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