The breakage rate for Microsoft's Surface devices is worse than for other manufacturers' laptops and tablets, Consumer Reports said, adding that it was removing its "recommended" designation for Surface products.
The non-profit publication surveyed 90,000 tablet and laptop owners and found that an estimated 25 percent of those with Microsoft Surface devices would be presented with "problems by the end of the second year of ownership," according to a study published on Thursday.
"If you are very concerned about how long your products are going to last, it might be better for you to go with a brand that has a higher predicted reliability," said Jerry Beilinson, electronics editor at the consumer goods testing publication.
Microsoft disputed the study, saying the company's return and support rates differ significantly from the Consumer Reports study.
"We don't believe these findings accurately reflect Surface owners' true experiences or capture the performance and reliability improvements made with every Surface generation," the company said in a statement.
According to the Consumer Reports survey responses, the Microsoft devices were found to freeze, unexpectedly shut down or have issues with their touchscreens.
Altogether, the reliability issues made Microsoft a statistical outlier compared with other brands. Apple had the most reliable devices, Beilinson said.