Mobile Technology

Dual-screen Surface Duo marks Microsoft's return to smartphones

Dual-screen Surface Duo marks ...
The Microsoft Surface Duo can run two apps side by side
The Microsoft Surface Duo can run two apps side by side
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The Microsoft Surface Duo can run two apps side by side
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The Microsoft Surface Duo can run two apps side by side
The Microsoft Surface Duo can be used in either landscape or portrait modes
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The Microsoft Surface Duo can be used in either landscape or portrait modes
The Microsoft Surface Duo is a phone with two screens
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The Microsoft Surface Duo is a phone with two screens
The Microsoft Surface Duo can give users more viewing area in one app stretched over two screens
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The Microsoft Surface Duo can give users more viewing area in one app stretched over two screens
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Four years after abandoning the realm of smartphones, Microsoft has thrown its hat back into the ring. This time the company is gunning for a piece of that double-screen pie with the Surface Duo, a hinged phone that has a focus on multitasking.

Originally announced almost a year ago, we now have more solid details on the Surface Duo. It’s made up of a pair of 5.6-in AMOLED displays that, when open, add up to a massive 8.1-in display (measured diagonally) with a combined resolution of 2,700 x 1,800 pixels.

Perhaps most importantly, these screens are connected by a hinge, like the flip-phones of old (or the LG G8X of late). That allows Microsoft to conveniently skirt around Samsung’s teething problems with the first Galaxy Fold phones, which had bendable screens that wore out very quickly.

The other advantage of the hinge is that it can open in a full 360-degree range of motion. It closes in a clamshell design that protects the screen, and can operate partway open like a book, flat like a tablet, bent backwards like a tent, or even folded right back on itself with each screen facing outwards.

The Microsoft Surface Duo can be used in either landscape or portrait modes
The Microsoft Surface Duo can be used in either landscape or portrait modes

To make the most of that extra screen real estate, the Surface Duo can display any two apps side by side. That could come in handy to, for instance, message friends while watching a video, take notes while reading, compare two products while shopping online, or flick through a presentation while on a video call.

Or one app can be stretched over two displays. That could give you more viewing area for scrolling through websites or photos, let you read an ebook more like a real one, or use the bottom screen as a keyboard, laptop-style.

As for other specs, it comes with an 11-MP camera with the usual range of photo and video modes, 128 or 256 GB of storage space, and dual batteries with capacities of 3,577 mAh each. Microsoft has wisely ditched its Mobile Windows platform and opted for the Android 10 operating system instead.

Preorders for the Surface Duo are now open, and the device is due to launch in the US on September 10. Prices start at US$1,399.

Check it out in action in the video below.

The new Surface Duo. Do one better.

Source: Microsoft

View gallery - 4 images
6 comments
Peter Joy
I would buy this but it's priced at about 3 times what it's worth - so, no!
mediabeing
The price would have to plummet. I'll wait for the early adopters to pay the outrageous early prices. Microsoft knows the price has to come down. It would have to do a lot more tricks that variable folding too. It should be offered with a personal thermometer for pandemic purposes.
vince
Price is a no no. No thanks. I'll stick with my Mozo Z forevermore. Love all my magnetic options. 10X zoom, triple battery, printer, projector, etc, etc.
Grunchy
A $150 tablet with a $1,250 hinge.
Ken O'Neill
Looks like a pile of cr ap from 2010.
Geoffo
I like the solid hinge and size. Now if It would run IOS I would be a buyer.