Surface Pro 3 and its power-saving sleep state called InstantGo: how it works

Surface Pro 3 and its power-saving sleep state called InstantGo: how it works

Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 comes packed with several new features over its predecessor, the Surface Pro 2. The screen is larger, the device is faster, and it also comes with a flexible kickstand for better lapability. But did you know that the Surface Pro 3 comes with a feature called "InstantGo?"

Here's how it works. If you don't use your Surface Pro 3 for a few minutes, the screen turns off and it goes into a power-saving sleep state called InstantGo. With InstantGo, your Surface Pro 3 will wake up instantly with your apps and data up to date. If you don’t use the device for several hours, it will hibernate. Hibernation saves your work, and then turns off your Surface. When you start up your Surface again, you’re back where you left off. However, it wont be as fast as InstantGo.

So how does ​InstantGo work? It maintains network connectivity when your screen is off in standby mode, allowing the system to update things in the background, and keeping it ready to instantly resume. Your email will continue to sync even though your screen is off so when you return to your device, everything is waiting for you. If you turn your screen off, you can still receive Skype calls. Power consumption in this connected standby mode is very low, and yet the system is always ready to spring back to life with your next interaction.

Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 comes with this feature enabled by default. However, you can disable it and manipulate your Power Options to your liking, as indicated here. Power Options, aside from the balanced power option, are not available when InstantGo is enabled.

InstantGo is not limited to a particular form factor or a particular architecture like ARM, x64, or x86. In fact, InstantGo simply requires Windows RT, Windows 8.1, and tightly integrated hardware and software. The feature is available on devices like the Dell Venue Pro 8, Dell Venue Pro 11, Asus T100TA, ThinkPad Tablet 2, Surface, Surface 2, and more.

This is a fantastic feature that allows you to conserve battery life without having to shut down your device every time -- ensuring that your device is always ready for interaction.

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