Tuesday, 15 October, 2019

Hell freezes over: Microsoft Surface Duo is an Android-based foldable device

Microsoft Surface event LIVE updates Surface Laptop 3 Surface Pro 7 and Surface on ARM expected Microsoft Surface Event is scheduled for 2 October at 10 am ET
Laverne Griffith | 03 October, 2019, 01:28

Microsoft's Chief Product Officer Panos Panay holds a Surface Duo, left, and Surface Neo at an event, Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2019 in NY. Pre-order is available now, and the laptops will be in stores starting October 22. More conventional new products included the Surface Pro X and Surface Pro 7 tablets, Surface Earbuds and the SQ1 custom Arm chip. Some quick points to note are that the 13.5 inch Surface Laptop 3 comes with 10th Gen Intel Core processors. The keyboard also magnetically seals to the back of the Neo and can flip around when you're ready to use it. Neo is coming in 2020, and there's no price tag yet.

Microsoft chief product officer Panos Panay said the event would involve "showing the world what's next for Surface and Microsoft".

Despite a shift towards its software and cloud computing business in recent years, Microsoft's Surface hardware line has remained popular with PC and tablet users globally. And the Surface Laptop 3 also supports fast charging, and can charge up to 80% in just an hour.


Surface Duo is the first Surface to fit in your pocket. The company will also stream it on its Facebook and Twitter accounts. The processor helps enable "always on" functionality with the device, as well as mobile connectivity with LTE Advanced, Microsoft said.

Split screen mode or spanning to have an app sit on both the left and right half. It will start shipping on November 5 at a $999 price point and is available for preorder today.

"Surface Duo is the best chance Microsoft has ever had to drive success in smartphones", Patrick Moorhead, president and principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, told SiliconANGLE. In some ways this is a younger sibling to the dual-screen Surface Neo device also revealed today, but the big difference here is the embracing of Android. I wasn't able to take the processor THAT far, but it was able to handle web browsing, and opening some of the other apps in Windows 10.


The 15-inch model will start at $1,199 and the 13.5-inch variant is set to become available for a more accessible $999.

Then there's the Surface Pro X, which is an even thinner and lighter take on the Surface Pro blueprint - it comes with a mobile chip and LTE connectivity, which means it's created to be connected to the web at all times, much like your phone.

At the NY hardware event, Microsoft executives also took the opportunity to showcase new versions of two existing devices. They'll be available in time for the holidays priced at $249.


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