Surface Pro 3 updates bring improved battery life, updated Type Cover reliability

Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is getting updated today with several software enhancements that will help to stabilize the platform as well as improve the usability of some features. As we said last week, Microsoft would be bringing several updates to the platform and they have now been released and are ready for download.

This time around, there are a couple firmware updates that are supposed to improve battery life as well as improve the reliability of the Type Cover. You can check out all the updates in the list below:

  • Surface Pro Embedded Controller Firmware (v.38.2.50.0) reducing power consumption, and enhancing system stability.
  • Surface Pro System Aggregator Firmware (v. 3.8.250.0) enhancing battery life, and increasing efficiency and reliability in low power states.
  • Surface Type Cover Firmware Update (v. 2.0.1021.0) improving trackpad reliability and system stability.
  • Surface Accessory Device (v. 2.0.1012.0) helping the on-screen keyboard (OSK) appear and disappear at the correct times.
  • Wireless Network Controller and Bluetooth (v. 15.68.3042.79) enhancing system stability, reducing power consumption in low power states, and improving some WiFi connection scenarios. Look for another WiFi update coming soon.
  • We will also issue an update on Wednesday, July 16, to further improve Wi-Fi connection and throughput scenarios.

The updates are rolling out now but know that they are delivered in stages which means that you may not be able to see them yet. If you can't see them yet, make sure to manually refresh Windows Update to see if that triggers them to download.

We expect Microsoft to continue to push out firmware updates over the life of the Pro 3 and we will report back too when the company releases the Wi-Fi updates next week.

Source: Microsoft

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19 Comments

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Do not update new firmware.

My SP3 was working fine until the new firmware updated automatically. Today my SP3 freeze 4 times. Only tablet mode is working. I have to restart and unplug the keyboard to get the touch pad and keyboard back. I wish I can roll back to the old firmware which did not have any problem since June 20th.

I'm still waiting for them to fix the problem where every single surface from 1 to 3 sometimes fail to detect the cover is attached. I don't know what kind of lousy engineer is in charge of this at MSFT but the fact they can't tell the damn thing is plugged in after 3 models I think it calls for somebody getting fired.

Just checked here in Canada and have 13 updates and 1 optional update...i have the i5/128GB model since day 2 (was out of town on day 1). I am more than happy with the battery life and the WiFi limited connectivity issue only seems to occur when I am at my office on WiFi and not with my home...even then its a simple case of turning off WiFi and then on again. IMO not a huge issue but hopefully will get fixed. Impressed here as well. Anyone interested in my Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 that this replaced? PM me.

Oh I know the Surface is all about productivity... But sometime, it's nice to have some fun. I'm a casual gamer, not a hardcore PC gamer.

And it may sound stupid to you, but it's juste one example : Where is Candy Crush in the Microsoft Store? And please, don't tell me to play it from Facebook... I don't need to do that on my Note Pro 12.2, the app is available.

It's a tablet, but it lacks MANY of the TABLET software you can find on iOS or Android.

Or is it a tablet?

TruckWEB said,
Oh I know the Surface is all about productivity... But sometime, it's nice to have some fun. I'm a casual gamer, not a hardcore PC gamer.

And it may sound stupid to you, but it's juste one example : Where is Candy Crush in the Microsoft Store? And please, don't tell me to play it from Facebook... I don't need to do that on my Note Pro 12.2, the app is available.

It's a tablet, but it lacks MANY of the TABLET software you can find on iOS or Android.

Or is it a tablet?

Ask the developers of Candy Crush?

Brilliant answer... Do you know about market share? When you don't have it, don't expect devs to pour time into your OS.

Tablet wise, Windows 8 is not a raging succes...

TruckWEB said,
Oh I know the Surface is all about productivity... But sometime, it's nice to have some fun. I'm a casual gamer, not a hardcore PC gamer.

And it may sound stupid to you, but it's juste one example : Where is Candy Crush in the Microsoft Store? And please, don't tell me to play it from Facebook... I don't need to do that on my Note Pro 12.2, the app is available.

It's a tablet, but it lacks MANY of the TABLET software you can find on iOS or Android.

Or is it a tablet?

being able to run virtual machine means........ yeah, apk, ipa, everything you expect.

Just as a data point, I got a Surface Pro 3 on release day, and haven't had any issues with either Wi-Fi or battery life. I think the battery life is exceptional. If I just use it momentarily here and there throughout the day, and close the keyboard cover in-between uses, the battery lasts for DAYS.

I've been really impressed.

Wish I could say the same, but ever since I discovered my SP3 was powerful enough to play Minecraft my battery has been taking a beating. ;)

Forjo said,
Wish I could say the same, but ever since I discovered my SP3 was powerful enough to play Minecraft my battery has been taking a beating. ;)

Very glad to know it runs games. A great drawback for battery performance :)

Alansweeney said,

Very glad to know it runs games. A great drawback for battery performance :)


By tweaking the settings a bit, I'm able to enjoy playing Star Trek Online and Lord of the Rings online. LotRO doesn't properly support full screen scaling, so I have to lower the desktop res and play in a window, but STO allows for proper scaling and even an internal resolution percentage setting. So great framerates are possible.

Minecraft is 30+ FPS on max detail and max resolution with Optifine and Ovo's texture pack -- subject to where I am in our world, of course.

Star Citizen? Well, don't expect miracles. It loads, but you get a few frames per second at best. :). Then again, it's not anywhere near optimized -- LoD isn't even implement yet as far as I know. So maybe it'll get better.

Oh, and expect LOTS of fan usage while these are running. And yes, it is audible. But as you say, as drawbacks go, I'll take it!

I wonder how long the battery will last now. The Surface Pro 2 got a firmware update month after release and it went 2 hours longer. Guess it won't be that large of a gap this time, through it would be intresting to know.

Love how they continuously improve their products even after it hits RTM (e.g. Update 1 with WP8.1), so by the time the users get them they will be even better. :D

j2006 said,
....

Definitely something other OEMs need to look at.

Even better that MS is fixing the OS for everyone, not just their surface customers. Look at how they changed Pen input on SP3 for the artists of the world.

This will trickle into other OEMs as well.

deadonthefloor said,
I sure hope my i7 SP3 arrives with all these updates pre-applied.

Probably will, it's still got a month or more to go till it hits retail.

deadonthefloor said,
I sure hope my i7 SP3 arrives with all these updates pre-applied.

Maybe, maybe not. Probably wont take that long to update it though.

George P said,

Probably will, it's still got a month or more to go till it hits retail.

Actually less than a month. Which means they would have had to have been manufactured, packaged and ready to ship quite a while ago. I'm quite sure these will have to be downloaded.