Warning: Advanced Exchange Option Discontinued for Microsoft Complete

My Surface Pro 8 has been having ongoing battery health issues (it just reached 80% capacity after only 11 months) so I contacted Microsoft for warranty service. I explained that it already has had a firmware corruption issue preventing the Surface app from opening but held off until now since the battery life was rapidly declining and it had reached the 80% health mark. In this conversation, I learned that Advanced Exchange is no longer offered to customers. Given this change in policy, I am seriously considering moving to a laptop and buying an iPad for other tasks. I hope others find this information helpful since the Advanced Exchange option was advertised to me when I purchased my Complete. While Best Buy has some repair centers, they are few and far between and only exist in about 12 states with the closest one to me being over 100 miles away. Here is the message sent to me by their agent William which was subsequently confirmed by his supervisor.

We used to have a replacement method called Advanced Exchange, but recently Microsoft cancelled this option


Every time I think of going back to a surface pro, they do something like this. I live in a VERY rural area and that Advanced Exchange was awesome!

Does Microsoft want the Surface line to fail at this point?

I think, one, while you’re justifiably upset, don’t make decisions out of anger. But two, a two device solution is increasingly a better idea in my mind as they can focus on what they are good at. Might be a good directional shift for you.

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Based on my experience with BB repairs, you are lucky you are too far away to use them…


Hmmmm - what about a MBP14 with two iPad Mini 6 sidecars? Now who’s wacked?

Scratch that - one sidecar only…but you made me look!

The lawyer in me makes me wonder about discontinuing a service that was most of the incentive to purchase coverage for your device through Complete Care, while that policy is still in effect.


I wonder if it was really a written benefit of Complete Care - in the old days I always had to ask for it and offer up a credit card for full replacement value if I didn’t return my unit?

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Same I always had to ask for it(after a in store rep once told me about it) & offer a card.

Believe it or not, I recall that I actaully read the Complete Care warranty at one time. I recall that there was something about it in the warranty. But, I haven’t had complete care since my Surface Go 1, so that was a long time ago and it may have been removed since then. At least, one can hope that MS’s lawyers would be that astute.


I don’t believe it is part of the contractual agreement. The Advanced Replacement was only an optional offering, in the form of “may” and “if Microsoft choose” (talk about grammar!) as listed in the agreement, where they specify a charge on the credit hold if the user fails to return the defective unit back within 14 days:


And sometimes you only got a “refurbished unit” but you were on the hook for full “suggested retail price” of the replacement.


It was my understanding for the past year that “Advanced Exchange” was only offered on the Commercial Surface Warranties.

In selling Commercial Surface Models, if asked what the difference between Retail (Best Buy) and Commercial (reseller, cdw, etc) models, among some of the differences like Windows 11 Pro vs Home, Hardware TPM vs Firmware TPM, etc, Advanced Exchange is outright pitched at only being available on Surface commercial models.

What model do you have, commercial or retail? And where did you get your warranty?

On their Business’ warranty site, Advanced Exchange is still advertised.


One of the more annoying stipulations. Like if you buy a device and its Dead On Arrival, and you utilize the Warranty (standard, extended, or complete), Microsoft will send you whatever they have, which can potentially be a Refurb or a New Unit, purely at Microsoft’s discretion, but you have no control over what you get. The unit will be in mint physical condition so most people wouldn’t even notice. But one way to verify is to run a battery report, since Microsoft from what I can tell doesn’t replace the battery for refurbs.

One of my co-workers was given a Demo Laptop 4 for demonstrative/sales purposes, and the battery was dead dead, like it only worked when plugged in. it was a demo device but we assumed it was still a new device since it came from Microsoft directly. I ran the battery report and it evidently it a had a nice and long life of heavy usage long before my co-worker received, which indicates they gave us a refurb.

Its funny, whenever we get devices from Microsoft, this is now like the first thing I check.


That’s why I recall it. I have the commerical model. Some of those warranties were offered for 3 or 4 year terms. I wonder what they’re doing about that?

@Bronsky and @darkmagistric, I got clarification that Advanced Exchange is still an option for Complete for Business. Since I was misdirected to the wrong support line, they were providing me guidance on consumer Complete. So as long as you buy Complete for Business, Advanced Exchange is as option. Lesson learned: Avoid Complete and buy Complete for Business regardless of the classification of your Surface. As I recall, I was able to apply Complete for Business on a consumer Surface Pro 7.


Just came to post the same thing :slight_smile:

PS: unofficially MS stopped it for consumers allegedly due to persistent and widespread fraud :frowning:


no no no…you have to buy the warranty in the same channel you bought the Surface. If you bought a Retail Surface Pro 9, you cannot add a Commercial Warranty to it. (or at least you’re not supposed to).

From the perspective of a reseller like CDW, Insight or others…they procure their supply of Surfaces from Distributors, and it falls to the Distributor to attach the actual warranty to the serial number, and they would not be able to attach a Retail warranty to a commercial devices, or vice versa. Its not just the serial numbers, Commercial models have different SKU’s as do the commercial warranties. If they attempt they get an alert that the SKU’s aren’t compatible. Kind of the same if you tried applying a Laptop 5 Warranty to the Pro 9, even though the warranty is exactly the same thing, the SKUs wouldn’t be compatible.

On the commercial side, I can attest this has been tested many a time. Most recently with the Studio 2+. Odd little fact about it, but for the Commercial SKU of the Studio 2+, Microsoft only offers a Complete for Business’ Warranty with ADP for 2 years.

However, on the retail side, they do offer the Retail equivalent of the Complete warranty, but they also offer up the 3 & 4 year options. For whatever reason they won’t offer that for commercial market.

There was a client who bought a commercial Studio 2+ (which despite the different SKU, it is the exact same product as retail) and he could not attach the 4-year complete retail warranty to it.

I appreciate the insight, but this is incorrect. A few years ago, I did this first with a consumer Surface Pro 7, and the process was totally seamless. You may have been told you are “supposed” to do otherwise, but I suspect the commercial vendor just wants you to purchase from them instead or lacks the business workflow. Translation: They likely do not have their custom online sales system programmed to register serial numbers other than one derived from a customer order, and they do not want to bother typing out a manual email instead of the automated email that that their system generates to register the device warranty. I posted about this initially on Reddit and the legacy TabletPCReview site and since then it has been repeatable and reliable. It just works. I had family members do the same without issue as well and consumer units are fully covered just the same under a Complete for Business plan.

Who sold you the warranty? Did you call Microsoft Directly?

Maybe it was something they allowed back in 2019, but everything I’m seeing now says the contrary.

Even on Microsofts Store…you literally can’t buy the commercial warranties for the retail units.

Like if you buy both a Retail and Business Surface with the warranties for each, the Warranties still fall under their respective Surface. You can’t mix and match them. Like you can delete the warranty, but deleting the device would delete its corresponding warranty as well. On their site there is no way you can built that.

That’s because (1) the Microsoft Store has the business and consumer SKUs separate from each other and (2) they preselect what consumers and business customers can add assuming a consumer doesn’t likely wants but a business user does. These extras of “for Business” include no deductible, priority support, and access to Advanced Exchange. However, regardless of this, you can purchase a Microsoft Complete warranty up to 45 days after purchase. I can confirm this works with Provantage and Protected Trust, as recently as last year with his Surface Laptop Studio to which my brother applied a Complete for Business warranty.