US-Bought Surface Pro 3’s Don’t Work with Wi-Fi Channels Above 11 in Europe

US-Bought Surface Pro 3’s Don’t Work with Wi-Fi Channels Above 11 in Europe

I know a lot of MVPs and other Europeans that regularly visit the United States to attend and speak at conferences; we even have a pretty large European contingent here at IT/Dev Connections this week. When our European friends visit, it’s not unheard of that a main highlight of their trip is visiting an actual Microsoft Store and purchasing Surface Pro 3s.

Barb Bowman directed my attention this morning to a thread on the Microsoft forums where there are reports of US-bought Surface Pro 3s that can't connect to Wi-Fi networks that require channels above 11. This is probably not a unique situation. Most Wi-Fi access points support a vast range of Wi-Fi channels, but some newer ones don’t. Obviously, purchasing a Surface Pro 3 in your resident country is the best practice, but of course, that’s not always the case.

Per the forum thread, there was a quick registry modification that could be made to increase the available channels on a Surface Pro 2, however, the driver in the Surface Pro 3 is different. Microsoft continues to have Wi-Fi problems with the Surface Pro 3 and has spent considerable time and updates trying to solve these problems. However, even the most current update still didn’t resolve all the problems. In fact, I’ve had none of the reported Wi-Fi problems for my Surface Pro 3 until this last update. Now, when my Surface Pro 3 wakes up from idle, I have to reboot to get Wi-Fi working again—just as has been reported since the device’s public release.

Go figure.

Anyway, I’m sure someone has found a new fix specifically for the Surface Pro 3. If you have a fix drop me a note so we can let everyone know. In the meantime, I’m reaching out to Microsoft to see if there might be a fix, however, I really don’t expect a positive response because, per the moderator’s answer…

Thanks for the question regarding using Channels 12 and 13 with a device purchased in the US. I'll help you.

These channels are not available on US devices. They are setup in this manner in accordance with US law. As such, these channels are not accessible/useable on the device.

Thanks for reaching out to us with this question. Please let us know if you have any other issues or questions for the Community.

I’ll also be asking our resident IT/Dev Connections MVPs today. I’m sure someone in that group has found some sort of fix.

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