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Was a malfunctioning Surface Pro responsible for the Patriots' loss to the Broncos yesterday?

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Was a malfunctioning Surface Pro responsible for the Patriots' loss to the Broncos yesterday?
Back in 2014, Microsoft agreed to pay the NFL $400 million to make the Surface Pro the official sideline computer of the NFL. The tablet replaced the old Polaroid cameras that teams would employ to find weaknesses in certain formations used by the opposition. For the NFL, it brought new technology to the league. For Microsoft, it gave the company a chance to promote its slates to millions over the course of an NFL season.

But there have been problems. One glaring error might be the fault of the NFL and its broadcast partners who can't seen to get their announcers to stop calling the tablet an iPad.  Another problem is that the tablets don't have a good reputation among NFL players. "Those tablets always malfunction," tweeted the New York Giants' guard Geoff Schwartz yesterday.

Schwartz' tweet came after the tablets assigned to the New England Patriots stopped working during the AFC Championship Game. Considering that the winning team goes to the Super Bowl and the losing team goes home, this was not the time for the Surface Pro units to stop working. And you can be sure that red-faced Microsoft executives started at their television sets screaming at CBS announcers who finally got the name of the device right. "Sure, now you call it the Surface Pro," they might have said.

According to CBS sideline reporter Evan Washburn, the Patriots were unable to use their Surface Pro tablets to see the defensive schemes of the Broncos, whose defense did a terrific job holding Tom Brady and crew in check. And while the tablets can't really be blamed for the 20-18 loss that prevented New England from a return trip to the Super Bowl, it is better than blaming someone like kicker Stephen Gostkowski, whose missed extra-point kick forced the Pats to go for a two-point conversion at the end of the game.

"They're having some trouble with their Microsoft Surface tablets. That last defensive possession the Patriots' coaches did not have access to those tablets to show pictures to their players. NFL officials have been working at it. Some of those tablets are back in use but not all of them. A lot of frustration that they didn't have them on that last possession."-Evan Washburn, sideline reporter, CBS

For its part, Microsoft blamed "network issues" for the problems with the Surface Pro tablets during the game. Yet, only the Patriots experienced this issue. Perhaps it was simply karma, or payback from the heavens above for "deflategate."



source: AppleInsider

51 Comments
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posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:36 1

1. ph00ny (Posts: 1193; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Here we go with another deflagate comment when all the prominent scientist from various institution has proven that NFL's multimillion dollar investigation is false

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:16

13. sgodsell (Posts: 3325; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)


Of course Microsoft is always spying. How else can Microsoft come up with their predictions for game scores.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:42 2

29. Doakie (Posts: 1886; Member since: 06 May 2009)


Or are these "prominent scientists" deflating the findings of the million dollar investigation?!?

DEFLATEGATE STRIKES AGAIN!!!

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 15:39 2

39. HildyJ (Posts: 294; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


The Patriots forgot they weren't at home and jammed the wrong network band.

posted on 26 Jan 2016, 17:32

49. tbacba (Posts: 98; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Hahaha, good one! (and so true) How anyone can support a team of proven cheaters is being me.

posted on 26 Jan 2016, 17:33

50. tbacba (Posts: 98; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Not being, 'beyond'.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 20:00

45. joey_sfb (Posts: 5409; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


Another of Apple Insider's propaganda. Microsoft may lack the experience to coordinate this form of event properly, I am sure they will do better next round.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:37

2. NexusKoolaid (Posts: 477; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


I read this morning that when the question of who provided the faulty network was raised, that Microsoft had no comment.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:48 3

4. sip1995 (Posts: 1562; Member since: 07 Feb 2014)


Our team on the field confirmed the issue was not related to the tablets themselves but rather an issue with the network. We worked with our partners who manage the network to ensure the issue was resolved quickly.

Is this what you're looking for ?

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:53

7. NexusKoolaid (Posts: 477; Member since: 24 Oct 2011)


No. That statement was followed by a question of who own and maintains that network, and Microsoft declined to immediately reply.

http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2016/01/25/microsoft-blames-surface-tablets-malfunction-on-network-not-hardware.html

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:31 3

19. TechieXP1969 (Posts: 8839; Member since: 25 Sep 2013)


Who provided the network? Who is the ISP? Who's IT person setup the network? Did they work for MS?

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:44

31. Doakie (Posts: 1886; Member since: 06 May 2009)


They worked for the Broncos.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:46 16

3. Commentator (Posts: 3669; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


Funny, I seem to remember football teams winning games before tablets even existed...

posted on 26 Jan 2016, 01:12

47. jroc74 (Posts: 5995; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


And we are done here folks.

posted on 28 Jan 2016, 10:56

51. murphslaws (Posts: 54; Member since: 22 Apr 2015)


Relevant username, here have an upvote.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:50

5. Martineverest (Posts: 250; Member since: 27 Oct 2015)


Apple at work..ms should sue them

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 11:53 1

6. cnour (Posts: 587; Member since: 11 Sep 2014)


Hahahahahahahah...what will happen if it is an Android tablet?

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:07 2

8. Unordinary (Posts: 1271; Member since: 04 Nov 2015)


The team would probably get sick from a virus.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:11 2

10. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 2208; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


Same can be said about Ios and the iPad.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:25 4

16. cnour (Posts: 587; Member since: 11 Sep 2014)


The match will stop and will continue next day due to a lag!!!!! Hahahahaha

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:18

24. Bernoulli (Posts: 3788; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)


It's not an android tablet.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:42 3

28. vincelongman (Posts: 4150; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)


Androit tablet: delayed, waiting for carrier/OEM to push the update

iPad: delayed, waiting for version X.3 or X.4 to fix lag/performance issues introduced by new update

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 14:04

37. Bernoulli (Posts: 3788; Member since: 01 Sep 2012)


Don't forget the lag on the Android tablet, along with lower camera quality compared to other OSes

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:44 2

32. Unordinary (Posts: 1271; Member since: 04 Nov 2015)


This comment string is a joke thread....

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:37 9

25. tedkord (Posts: 10613; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


On an iPad, Apple Maps would send the receiver to his own end zone.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:15

12. xondk (Posts: 1236; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)


more then likely has nothing to do with the platform and more the software they are using, and the fact that they even 'need' to use that seems...odd to me, on the fly 'changing' of their tactics by keeping an eye on the opponents team? last I checked that's what a trainer is supposed to be doing from the sideline?

So trainers are going to be replaced by computers? or maybe they should do what they are there for?

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:41

27. Napalm_3nema (Posts: 2155; Member since: 14 Jun 2013)


The Surface replaced a book of printouts that came down from the booth after every series so offensive and defensive players could look at formations and plays. The NFL used the printouts for decades, but this was supposed to be less time intensive and more interactive. It's a big deal when one team loses that functionality.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:55

36. xondk (Posts: 1236; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)


Well huh, here I was under the impression that they had a coach/trainer that kept an eye on that, may be just with football (soccer in american terms)? Don't get me wrong electronics are great, but....yes, they can fail, if its something you rely on a lot, you don't use something that can fail, and its regardless of computer, even if it was an ipad it could fail, I mean last I checked stability tests say ipads crash more, so yeah, fully fledged computers such as surface pro might be the best choice in terms of computers.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 15:54

40. Napalm_3nema (Posts: 2155; Member since: 14 Jun 2013)


There are coaches in the booth above, as well as on the sidelines, but they cannot relay all the formations to players. American football is a lot more structured, regarding formations, than football. It is a pretty big deal to see how the other team reacts to your pre-snap formation.

As for Surface, they are in no way more stable than iPad and Android tablets. They have way too many software issues, even though these are tasked to run a single application, and that's it.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:10 1

9. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 2208; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


New England lost because the Broncos are better than them. That's the only reason there is.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:32 2

20. TechieXP1969 (Posts: 8839; Member since: 25 Sep 2013)


well at least in the game last night.
The broncos were playing the tightest defense I ever seen done by any team.

I mean they were everywhere the Patriots didn't want them to be.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:45

33. Unordinary (Posts: 1271; Member since: 04 Nov 2015)


Something useful and true that came out of your mouth for once.

Yes, the Broncos have the best defense in the league.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:39

26. tedkord (Posts: 10613; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


That's it exactly. Unfortunately, I drew NE in the office Super Bowl pool, so I'm out.

And it really doesn't matter who won, Carolina is going to crush either one.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 18:31

44. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 2208; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


So True Cam Crushing It This Season, Got #1 In My Fantasy League Thx To Cam.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 14:13

38. Crispin_Gatieza (Posts: 1611; Member since: 23 Jan 2014)


New England's O-line was exposed and Brady, without protection, looked like the 6th round draft pick he is. To put it another way, he looked like Ryan Tannehill. Average.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:12 5

11. Sakeem (Posts: 416; Member since: 05 Sep 2012)


No. The Surface had nothing to do with it. It was the Broncos defense that was responsible for the Patriots loss.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:19

14. Tizo101 (Posts: 394; Member since: 05 Jun 2015)


Alan F special lol - nice joke

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:23

15. nctx77 (Posts: 1760; Member since: 03 Sep 2013)


Oh boy. If this was a network problem or not, it not a good look for Microsoft and the Surface Pro.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:27 5

17. Crispin_Gatieza (Posts: 1611; Member since: 23 Jan 2014)


The minute the tablets got hard-wired to Ethernet, the problems went away. Jim Nantz even said so during the telecast. Take off the tin foil hats, nothing to see here.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:42

21. VZWuser76 (Posts: 3889; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)


Hey, this is PA! Your logic and facts aren't welcome here! So until you can start bashing without proof or using it as a way to rag on something completely unrelated, GTFO!!! ;-)

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:10

23. Crispin_Gatieza (Posts: 1611; Member since: 23 Jan 2014)


Sorry, I didn't mean to cause any harm. I'll kindly see myself to the nearest Apple article to post nonsense and baseless opinion.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 17:18

42. VZWuser76 (Posts: 3889; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)


See that you do and don't let this happen again! ;-)

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:27 2

18. TechieXP1969 (Posts: 8839; Member since: 25 Sep 2013)


No. They lost because the Broncos were playing better.

The Surface itself didn't have any problems. They were having network issues on their side of the line.

The Broncos weren't having any issues.

Anyone who would even try to blame the lose of a game on tech that isn't even really related is dumb.

I rarely watch sports, but yesterday's games were probably the most exciting, especially the Panthers and Cardinals.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:43

30. Napalm_3nema (Posts: 2155; Member since: 14 Jun 2013)


It was a connectivity issue, but saying it doesn't matter is naive. That was a few series where Denver had access to all the formation data for plays and NE did not. That's a huge tactical advantage.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 12:52 2

22. jibraihimi (Posts: 755; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)


This article was sponsored by one fruit company........

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:46

34. dmomintz (Posts: 18; Member since: 21 Jan 2016)


One could only hope, that would be some awesome karma.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 13:49

35. rsiders (Posts: 862; Member since: 17 Nov 2011)


Two words: Broncos defense.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 16:58

41. Planterz (Posts: 2035; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)


And people wonder why I don't follow this stupid game.

posted on 25 Jan 2016, 17:20

43. darkkjedii (Posts: 20028; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


No, the Broncos were responsible for the Patriots loss to the Broncos yesterday.

posted on 26 Jan 2016, 00:24

46. pongkie (Posts: 533; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)


It's Windows 10 Wifi that has the problem. Not the tablets or the network. I get "No Internet, Secured". In the same network android and Ios works just fine but the surface and other pc with windows 10 just won't connect to the internet. Sometimes I get lucky but its unstable. I use surface 3 lte and i depend on the metered connection.

posted on 26 Jan 2016, 08:18

48. 7thspaceman (Posts: 1529; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)


Hmm Apple fans seem to forget that Steve Jobs had WIFI network problems so bad at a Major Apple event he had to tell everyone in the Audience to turn Off their WIFI network Connections so he could demonstrate an Apple Product. The Broncos Surface devices
and Network worked. the Patriots should have had pre game network connection tests before
the game.

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