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I'm At My Wits' End.


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First off, I'd like to say hello.  I've been reading the forums, but I haven't registered until today.


Second, I'll apologize that this is a negative post, I just need some ideas.


I'm on my Fourth surface in about 8 months.  One of them was just a replacement they sent me that was wrong. Two of them had massive overheating issues, now I have the fourth. My model is the i7/512


Finally I want to explain, I've been a technologist for 24 years.  I am multi platform, multi certified, and college educated.  I have worked for Microsoft and Apple at various points. I have run technology for fortune 500 companies, running help desk, automating roll outs, building trans continental WAN, etc.  I am extremely technical and well aware. That said I have been mostly using a mac at home for 15 years.


I have a lot of issues with the Surface and Microsoft in general but I'm going to limit it to my top few so this doesn't' turn into a novel.


Here are the issues I face right now that are driving me nuts.


Heat.  It's ridiculous.  Even photos just searching for new files gets this hot enough to cook an egg.  It seems like maybe it's worse since windows 10 final - even more specifically perhaps worsened again since one of the last couple of firmware updates, but that's anecdotal. I really don't know what to do at this point. I paid over two grand and I have worse performance than the $1200 version.  I don't believe there is a solution to this. I believe it is all i7 models, and it is a design flaw. I truly believe after say 3 swaps microsoft should offer a buy back.


Microsoft support - it's terrible.  Beyond the awful language barriers lie a group of individuals who probably aren't qualified to print, let alone try and troubleshoot.  I called in to confirm a bug in windows 8 and said "in Metro mail..." to which they replied "how did you get xp on your surface?"  It's almost impossible to get anywhere with them.  Does anyone have any idea how to contact people in North America or with some working knowledge of surface pro 3 or windows 10? They have a special surface line for their premiere product, but it's closed half the time compared to the 24/7 help line and the people staffing it clearly are not qualified.  I asked hjow to add the touch keyboard to windows 10 in tablet mode.. the guy came back and told me to open regedit.  While i was on hold for half an hour waiting for that answer i found the answer online to tap and hold. I really need a way to get hold of someone more knowledgeable who speaks english fluently and not via script..intelligible is a plus.


Trackpad of the type cover.  Is there any way to make this actually reject unintentional touches? It's one of the worst I've ever used.  It's overly sensitive - doesn't reject casual touch at all, and is small and fiddly.  I haven't found anything in windows 10 that really impacts these things...but again im not terribly familiar with w10


Finally input.  I can't believe basically any cell phone you get, any tablet, and all macs have system wide dictation and a $2000 computer doesn't  Microsoft has the same old speech recognition which doesn't work well to begin with.. but to make it worse, it seem to be linking to  a microphone I don't have.  For example if I use cortana in the search field, it hears me fine.  If i try to use speech recognition it doesn't hear me at all.  I can't find a way to set the input source for dictation.  That said the fact there isn't just a microphone on the keyboard and the ability to transcribe dictation anywhere. I thought this was supposed to be a feature of windows 10.  The two incorrect answers i get when asking about this are 


a) you can only control your computer with voice, you can't dictate you have to buy dragon naturally speaking (incorrect and microsoft licensed their older engine for the dictation that is present.) full dictation is included in windows 10... it's just a very very old technology, difficult to find and access, very resource intensive, and not too accurate without massive amounts of training


b)yah just go to the search the web and windows box - you can ask questions from there -  not what i am looking for.  I want to be able to open word, hit a microphone and dictate a letter. I want it to work like an iphone or ipad.  Anywhere you can enter text i want to be able to dictate. 


So tell me, did this get pulled from w10, was it never on the list, or is it present and i haven't found it somehow? Even windows phone can do this.  How can a $100 phone handle something better than their top of the line PC?


SO this is my starting point.  I despise this machine right now, unfortunately I am absolutely stuck with it due to paying for brain and spine surgery. I have to use it so if anyone can offer any help regarding the stuff I have written, I would be extremely grateful 


Frankly I am shocked at how badly this falls short of a good tablet or a good laptop


Once again thanks for taking the time, I am sorry to make such a negative first post.  I'm hoping to find some productive solutions for these issues, maybe even turn my opinion around.  I don't hold a huge amount of hope but I know my own limitations and when to reach out.


So hello again, thanks again.

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I personally don't use any kind of dictation on the surface so I cant help you there. As far as the I-7 heat issue, yes it does throttle when under heavy load...this also was an issue with the I-5 version and for that some consider the I-3 to be the ideal tablet in the sense that the faster processors throttle down to I-3 ish levels of performance. The main reason to get the faster processors was storage-ram, I personally think tablets are still in the stage of "light" desktop performance and definitely not a desktop or high end laptop replacement...yet. In my use case scenario the surface blows away everything when it comes to quick photo editing while out in the field, also anything that involves the pen is miles ahead of anything on android or ios.


About the trackpad, I have left any kind of setting to the default and I personally don't have any issue of accidentally touching it however Im still on windows 8.1 on the pro. You may want to clean install windows 10 or roll back to 8.1 to iron out the issues. There are bound to be several more updates fixing these issues for windows 10 on the surface pro line however I have a surface 3 that came with windows 10 already installed and not too many bugs to report on.

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I don't know if this will help but I just did a test on my windows 8.1 laptop and setup speech recognition (manual startup not automatic), make sure you have it pointed to use whatever mic you want to use...I used the onboard mic on the laptop and started a new doc in onenote to see how well it worked in there and it worked as well as my Samsung note 4. I did not try to use it in word as I have moved away from word and use onenote exclusively now...I think I read evernote works well with speech recog but I don't use it.

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I have been running the i7 256GB for over a year now. I had to replace it once because I dropped it and the glass broke. The issue with it getting hot is common. Mine has never got hot enough that it really impacted performance to a stand still or caused the system to shut down, and I have less heating issues since windows 10 came out. I do not know what you might be running, but I know that our Company has a few i5's that really overheat and perform rather badly due to a lot of the required IT software and control programs that are needed for security reasons. That software causes a lot of CPU usage when idle, and causes it to not go to sleep/randomly wake from sleep and drain battery.


I do not use the speech recognition software and do not know what to do about that.


I have had no real issues with the keyboard touchpad. I have it at default and I would say it could actually use more sensitivity. I have never had any issue with accidentally hitting it while using the keyboard. I know there is a setting in track pad settings that you can adjust the time latency response, but I have not messed with it before.


I mainly use my surface for browsing, and working on 3D modeling, animation, digital design, and mechanical Drafting in Solidworks and Autocad.


I am sorry to hear that you have had so many problems with all of the SP3's you have gone through. It might be that your needs are just more than what the SP3 is geared towards.

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HI.  Here's how to turn off the touchpad or set the settings to "delay" reacting to accidental touches:




Hope this helps.  It drove me crazy as well!  BTW, this is for Windows 10 which I'm assuming you have moved to because....why you'd remain on Window 8.x is a wonder.   :-)  

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