Sounds like typical laptop-itis IMO.
Most laptops are SATA II, and yours no doubt is. The main problem is power management in laptops, they constantly try to shut down any drives to save power, which SSDs don't like. You need to go into the Windows Power Options, click on Advanced settings, find Hard Disk in the list, and set that to "Turn off Hardisk..." to Never.
You should also Google on "turning off DIPM", which is also a standard fix for SSD freezing.
I wouldn't wait for a firmware update to fix your problem, that would not help. You can't compare your laptop to your desktop in performance or boot time, laptops trade performance for mobility. Start up time has so many variables, it's not simple at all.