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11/16/2012
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Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims

Lawsuit claims OS and pre-installed apps hog half of the available storage space on new Windows 8 tablet.

8 Cool Windows 8 Tablets For Home And Office
8 Cool Windows 8 Tablets For Home And Office
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A California attorney has filed a lawsuit against Microsoft, claiming that the company's new Surface tablet does not deliver as much storage as advertised.

Andrew Sokolowski claims in court papers that the Surface RT tablet he purchased was supposed to be capable of storing 32 GB of data, but that only 16 GB remained after accounting for the pre-installed Windows RT operating system and Microsoft Office apps.

The suit was filed earlier this week in Superior Court in Los Angeles. In a statement to the Associated Press, Microsoft said the suit, which asks for class-action status, is baseless.

"Customers understand the operating system and pre-installed applications reside on the device's internal storage, thereby reducing the total free space," Microsoft said. Surface RT is available in 32 GB or 64 GB configurations. The price starts at $499 for the 32-GB unit.

[ What might Microsoft be planning for the future? Read Watch For Microsoft To Acquire Nokia, Nvidia. ]

The lawsuit is the latest headache for Microsoft when it comes to Surface and Windows 8 tablets in general. A source said the company's sales reps are unhappy that a more business-friendly version of Surface, known as Surface Pro, won't be available until later this year or early next year.

Surface Pro runs Windows 8 Pro, and is compatible with all Windows software and legacy applications, as well as Microsoft's back-end administration, security and cloud tools. Surface RT runs Windows RT, which only supports pre-installed Microsoft software, or apps downloaded from the company's online Windows Store.

A Microsoft spokesperson this week said Surface Pro would be available in 70 days.

Also disrupting the Windows 8 rollout is a shortage of tablets that are powered by the new Clover Trail version of Intel's Atom processor. Insiders say the chipmaker has yet to produce Clover Trail in large quantities as the chip still has some bugs to be worked out. Clover Trail is supposed to deliver all-day battery life and 30 days of standby power.

The delay has left a number of computer makers, including Dell, Lenovo and Hewlett-Packard, unable to provide customers with a firm launch date for previously announced systems. Dell's website indicates a preliminary ship date of late December for its Latitude 10.

Also this week, the head of Microsoft's Windows unit, Steven Sinofsky exited the company.

Logistical problems aside, Surface and Windows 8 have received generally positive reviews. The OS ditches familiar Windows features like the Start Screen and Taskbar in favor of a new GUI that features blocky tiles like those found on Windows Phone 8, from which users can launch applications and services.

Windows 8 is key to Microsoft's efforts to catch Apple and Google's Android in the tablet market. It formally launched on Oct. 26.

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WrittenDescription
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WrittenDescription,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/2/2012 | 7:25:29 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
The lawsuit is not as ridiculous as some posters suggest. Yes, most consumers with a modicum of savvy understand that a portion of the total storage capacity is occupied by the device's operation system, pre-installed apps, etc. But a 50% reduction is borderline ridiculous and likely far in excess of what even savvy consumers would guestimate when determining which model suits their storage needs. If you disagree with this assessment, then consider an example where consumer-usable available storage was only 10% of advertised capacity. Would that be actionable unless the seller made the situation clear before purchase? If so, then we're simply left to argue about what's reasonable.
Drewboy
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Drewboy,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/17/2012 | 9:46:33 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
Hmmm. I'm guessing this is the RT version as the Pro version is not out yet. My question would be how much space will the Win 8 Pro take up?
moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
11/17/2012 | 5:12:24 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
I understand the argument and as far as Microsoft is concerned the wording in the spec sheet should be easy to get fixed. That said, 16GB is a lot for an OS and some apps. Other squeeze a full scale OS with enterprise apps into much less space.
jabberwolf
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jabberwolf,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/17/2012 | 6:09:01 AM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
I can't. If asked, they would reply with the correct answer. If looked for the consumer would see that the operating system takes up a certain amount of space. And when compared to all over MS desktops and operating systems that are used as precident, they use space as well. The HD space is the corrrect hardware specified. The assumption by the user, is at fault. Also if there are no damages. If he doesnt like it, he can return it. I see no intentional misleading or unintentional misleading information. Nor do I see any damages.z
The lawyer's case should not only be dismissed but he should be fined for filinf a frivilous law suit.
Dkramer3
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Dkramer3,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/16/2012 | 9:53:47 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
Remember years back when monitor vendors had to start advertising the "viewable area" of a monitor? The lawsuit came when a user (lawyer) bought a 19" monitor, and measured from corner to corner and only got a little over 17". He started a class action and won. After that monitor vendors had to advertise the viewable area of a monitor. This is basically the same situation with storage space. I think he will, (and should) win.

One possible benefit of this could be that software vendors will stop putting so much bloat-ware on their devices, so that they can have a better "usable area" rating on their device.
Bob Gill
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Bob Gill,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/16/2012 | 9:01:22 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
Just delete all the software and you're good to go.
jries921
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jries921,
User Rank: Ninja
11/16/2012 | 8:46:32 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
For years, vendors have done the same thing with personal computers, but the difference is that it's much easier to remove unwanted software (to include the whole OS, if desired) from a PC than it is to do so from a tablet or smartphone.

I'm guessing that if the plaintiff prevails, we'll start seeing vendors advertising how much space on the device is taken up by pre-installed software, which would probably not be a bad thing.
Darkpr0fit
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Darkpr0fit,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/16/2012 | 7:30:50 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
You got that right, however that doesn't count all the times that Microsoft has sued others including companies over so-called copywrite infrigment. So if you make a statement like the one you made let's not forget the real bullies in the leagal arena Microsoft.
Stephane Parent
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Stephane Parent,
User Rank: Strategist
11/16/2012 | 7:25:12 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
I can see the plaintiff's point. When you buy something that is pre-sized, it's a bit misleading to say your are buying a 32 GB Surface when only half of it is available. I wonder if the Microsoft salespeople are explaining this discrepancy to consumers? If they do, then the suit could be deemed frivolous.
GAProgrammer
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GAProgrammer,
User Rank: Strategist
11/16/2012 | 6:24:10 PM
re: Microsoft Sued Over Surface Storage Claims
This is so ridiculous. Just shows the horrible state of the US justice system. They really need to overhaul the entire litgation system.
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