Microsoft doesn’t have control over their own Surface computers


There’s an issue that, if I was in the Windows or Surface division, would really anger me. Basically, Intel has decided to remove some very important functionality from the Graphics Command Center app. The most important one being the ability to turn off that “feature” that dims the backlight when the on-screen content is dark (like a dark mode app/website or when you’re watching a movie in fullscreen). That’s not a small nitpick, Brad mentioned that as one of the reasons you should skip out on the Surface Laptop 3 (I think AMD did eventually release their graphics app though, so you should be able to turn that feature off). One of the ideas behind the Surface line was that, Microsoft had full control over the experience, which is important. But as we can see, that’s not really true… Don’t you think Microsoft should do something about this? Intel (or AMD, Nvidia and Qualcomm for that matter) shouldn’t be able to go over Microsoft and make changes to the Surface computers, but they currently can and do! Apple would never give Intel the ability to mess around with the Intel powered Macs. If Intel wanted to make some change to Intel powered Macs, they’d have to ask Apple for permission. This should also be the case with the Surface computers!

I am eager to hear what others think of this, am I thinking about this the wrong way or is there something I’m missing? I’m quite upset though, this dimming “feature” is back and I can’t easily or “officially” turn it off….

Comments (5)

5 responses to “Microsoft doesn’t have control over their own Surface computers”

  1. wright_is

    They make the hardware and they write the drivers for Windows. Microsoft's only control over that is selecting the components and certifying the drivers.

    • willr

      In reply to wright_is:

      Yup, it's pathetic. Imagine if overnight, all the Intel powered Macs got updated by Intel to have this screen dimming "feature" and there was no way to turn it off? There would be riots, it would be one of the biggest stories in the tech world for a week

      • rob_segal

        In reply to willr:

        Sometimes, this happens when you partner with other vendors. They make decisions about their products and you have to adjust whenever possible. Microsoft is not going to do what Apple does and try to control the whole stack. They're going to partner with other chip manufacturers. Microsoft cannot control every choice Intel makes. They can only adjust.

  2. madthinus

    Microsoft killed Creative Labs best reason to use a dedicated sound card with Windows Vista by removing a Direct X feature that powered EAX. This is the nature of partnering.

  3. illuminated

    That is not nice but on the other hand Apple can switch to another CPU architecture and it does not matter how big your company is and how much it has spent on Apple gear and software.