Microsoft Defends Surface Tablet After Bill Belichick Rant

On Tuesday (Oct. 18), New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick railed against Microsoft Surface tablets, which are used by coaches as part of a partnership with the NFL to bring playbooks to the future.

"I’m done with the tablets,” Belichick said on a conference call. “They’re just too undependable for me. I’m going to stick with pictures, which several of our other coaches do, as well, because there just isn’t enough consistency in the performance of the tablets. I just can’t take it anymore." (You can see the Patriots' transcript of the call here. His word salad of a rant is over 750 words long).

MORE: Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Full Review

Microsoft released a statement suggesting that the Surface is a perfectly reliable device:

"We respect Coach Belichick’s decision, but stand behind the reliability of Surface. We continue to receive positive feedback on having Surface devices on the sidelines from coaches, players and team personnel across the league. In the instances where sideline issues are reported in NFL games, we work closely with the NFL to quickly address and resolve."

The NFL also released a statement supporting Microsoft and the Surface:

"Since Microsoft has been a partner of the NFL and implemented their technology on our sidelines, the efficiency and speed of communication between coaches has greatly increased," the statement reads. "As with any technology, there are multiple factors that can cause issues within our sideline communications system either related to or outside of Microsoft's technology. We continue to work with all of our partners to ensure the best systems are in place to give our clubs the greatest chance for success on a weekly basis."

Earlier this month, Belichick tossed a tablet in frustration after his team allowed the Bufallo Bills to score a touchdown. We got a hands-on with the NFL's version of the Surface Pro back in February.

For what it's worth, we're big fans of the Surface Pro 4: it's currently our favorite detachable 2-in-1.

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