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Microsoft admits to Surface RT software bug, promises fix

Microsoft has admitted that a recent software update for its Surface RT tablet devices has gone awry, and has promised to release a second fix some time next month to resolve the issues introduced by the first.

The software update, released to owners of Microsoft's first tablet product on the 8th of January, was designed to resolve some issues reported by early adopters, but has brought a flaw or two of its own along for the ride. Since the update was released, users have reported issues with accessing the Windows Store - the only official way to download and install applications on the ARM-based Windows RT tablets - and to check for updates through the Windows Update system.

Others have reported that the issue extends to third-party apps as well as those provided by Microsoft, preventing them from downloading updates or installing new software on their devices.

Following an investigation, Microsoft has confirmed that the flaw is real, blaming a glitch in internet connectivity on affected devices. "Some Windows RT customers who attempted to apply January's bulletins had issues installing updates," a Microsoft spokesperson explained in a statement on the matter. "Specifically, impacted Windows RT devices went into connected standby mode during the download of updates from Windows Update, causing the connection to be disrupted.

"We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused and are working to correct the issue; we expect to have a fix in place in the first week of February."

The latest flaw to affect the Surface RT tablets, following reports of software issues and problems with the Touch Cover splitting and cracking even during light use, comes just ahead of the company's delayed launch of its Windows 8-based Surface Pro tablet family. Designed to offer a more powerful and flexible alternative to Surface RT, it remains to be seen if the issues experienced by early Surface RT adopters will harm sales of the more expensive Surface Pro devices.

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