Microsoft has announced it will launch the Surface Duo come September for $1,399. The company originally unveiled the Duo back in October 2019 when it said the phone would launch by the end of 2020 for the holidays. As it turns out, the company kept that promise.
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t shocked by the price. For $1,399, you’re getting a pair of 5.6-inch 1800×1350 OLED displays that open to form an 8.1-inch 2700×1800 panel. Under the hood, you get last year’s Snapdragon 855 processor, up to 256GB of storage, 6GB of RAM, and 3,577mAh of battery split over two cells. That spec list isn’t very impressive, and it gets even less impressive when you consider the device doesn’t ship with 5G or NFC onboard.
In terms of cameras, Microsoft includes just a single shooter which is an 11MP f/2.0 lens. It supports 4K video capture at 60 frames per second, HDR, Super Zoom up to 7x, and low light photography. It also ships with electronic image stabilization. You’ll be using this camera a lot if you buy a Duo since this is literally the only camera on the device. Video conferences, soccer games, firework displays, and more will all be captured on this very lens so get ready.
Most of what I’m saying here sounds kind of ignorant to the fact that the reason you’re paying so much money for the Duo is because of its design. That’s pretty obvious here. Microsoft has done a ton of work to Android and its own apps to make them work with both screens. For instance, if you open Outlook and tap a link in an email, that link could open in the other screen so you can pay attention to both tasks at once. Microsoft has also partnered with Amazon to enhance the Kindle app and make it feel like you’re reading a real book across the two screens (something LG should’ve done with its dual screen phones).
Microsoft has done a ton of work to achieve what it believes could be the future of smartphones. Nowadays, everyone kind of thinks they have the “future of the smartphone” figured out, so it’ll be interesting to see how the public responds when the company launches the Duo.
Speaking of which, the Surface Duo will launch on September 10th. Preorders are now live for the phone. It’ll be sold through Microsoft’s own store, Best Buy, and AT&T. I’ll be fascinated to see how much bloatware Microsoft lets AT&T load the Duo up with. The Duo ships with a bumper case in the box along with its charger.
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