Microsoft is officially making phones again. But the company is stressing that its new Surface Duo is a Surface first, and a phone second.
A new dual-screen device, the Surface Duo packs two 5.6-inch displays in a slim design; the displays can rotate 360 degrees, so you can use it as a large tablet — albeit with a break in the middle — or as a phone.
The Surface Duo will be powered by Android, not Windows, and it will allow you to perform two tasks at once without switching focus. Alternatively, you can run one app across both screens, or use one display as a keyboard.
The device will come out Holiday 2020. Pricing has not yet been announced. There’s a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 system-on-chip under the hood, according to Wired — the same silicon inside many of 2019’s flagship Android handsets. That processor will assuredly be out of date by the time the phone is scheduled to launch, which convinces us the design may evolve over the ensuing 12 months.
Additionally, we’re wondering if Microsoft will work to make the Surface duo 5G compatible, as many high-end phones due out next year, like the iPhone 12, are expected to support next-generation wireless networks in full force. For what it’s worth, the company did not mention 5G at all during its Oct. 2 keynote.
The Surface Duo resembles a downsized version of the Surface Neo, another two-screen foldable device that is also coming out next year around the holiday season. The Neo, which has two 9-inch screens, runs Windows 10X, as opposed to Android on the Surface Duo.