Forget Windows Phone: Microsoft Has A Surface Laptop That Fits In Your Pocket

The long-rumoured dual screen laptop from Microsoft - codenamed 'Surface Andromeda' - could be inching closer to an official announcement. The most recent leaked memos and uncovered patents point to a folding, miniature Surface that could be launching in a few month's time. Here's what you need to know.

Last month, technology journalist Paul Thurrott leaked fresh details about the fabled dual-screen Andromeda laptop, claiming it could be launching as early as 2018. Now, a Microsoft internal document obtained by The Verge strongly backs up the idea of a miniature folding Surface.

The memo specifically refers to a "pocketable Surface" that will "blur the lines between mobile and stationary computing" and form part of a “new and disruptive” product category. Them's fighting words if ever we heard them.

Andromeda's design is described as having a "wraparound" display with a seamless hinge separating both halves of the screen. These 3D renders based on the latest patents are reportedly accurate to existing engineering samples:

The latest leaked documents also make mention of stylus support (natch) and an ARM-based processor for higher power efficiency. It rather sounds like a Nintendo DS that runs Windows instead of games.

This all looks very intriguing, but will we actually see a commercial version in the shops? As The Verge notes, Microsoft has a track record of canning products very late into development. Indeed, the similar sounding Surface Mini had its plug pulled mere weeks before its slated release date.

The Surface Mini Is The Bullet Microsoft Dodged

The Surface family of computers is a big part of Microsoft's resurgence over the last few years. The Surface Mini was meant to accompany the Surface Pro 3 back in 2014 but Microsoft held it back. While it looks a lot like a Surface Pro that's been cut down, it ran a Snapdragon processor, just 1GB of memory and 32GB of storage.

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But something tells us the Andromeda will make it the production line (in one form or another.) After all, Microsoft is in sore need of a pocketable device following the demise of its Windows Phone platform. A dual-screen MS laptop would also align with similar concepts that were unveiled at Computex 2018 by Asus and Intel.

Whatever Microsoft does, it would appear we have a new - and potentially game-changing - product category waiting in the wings.

[Via Gizmodo]


Comments

    No it won't win anything, because Windows is still an awful tablet OS. The real bonus of mobile Windows is the legacy software support, because the Windows Store is still devoid of decent third party apps. Regular Windows apps are almost impossible to use on a tiny display because they're designed for mouse users. Add to that inconsistent display scaling for desktop apps and you're basically stuck with a device that isn't great at legacy apps and can't run much of anything else.

      I don't think MS is oblivious to this - after all, they discontinued Windows Phone because of it. I would bet that they have something up their sleeve. Going to give them the benefit of the doubt until they actually unveil something.

      What I'm confused about is - if this thing is going to have the display on the outer edge of the hinge, won't that mean that half the screen would be constantly laying on a desk or hard surface (pun intended) and get scratched?

      I mean, even with a screen protector, it would still mean half the screen will always look worse.

        I would bet that they have something up their sleeve
        But they pretty much can't fix what's wrong with it - a severe lack of app support, and no real way to make desktop apps work on such a small display. Plenty of other manufacturers have attempted to make small screen Windows devices since Windows 8, and none of them were any good.

        Windows Phone never got the support, and Windows 10 S is effectively dead now too - because nobody wants to use Windows Apps, even if they're available. There's a reason nobody wants a Surface without a keyboard cover, and why the iPad is still the best selling tablet.

          I'm not saying I disagree - those are valid points. What I'm saying is that if the tech industry has taught us anything, it's that seemingly impossible things can be overcome. Who knows, maybe MS worked out a deal with Google? Maybe they're also working on a software solution that tailors desktop apps to be usable on this form factor? Stranger things have happened.
          Regardless of what your personal view of MS is, they're not stupid. They know precisely why Windows Phone died. Hell, they intentionally killed it themselves. It's extremely unlikely that they would repeat exactly the same mistake twice in a row. I'm willing to bet there's way more to this than a fancy new form factor.

          Don't make others go away. You are trying to say apple is the best, which isn't. Windows 10 still on game, bro. check out the new mobile phones that available Microsoft official site. You'll understand then.

            They're not 'new'. They are over 2 years old. Just because they still have them for sale, doesn't mean the platform is still being developed for lol.

        They didn't discontinued windows mobile, dude. It's still to buy on Microsoft official site. They only discontinued windows 8.1 . windows 10 still on game, bro.

          Mate, they've officially stopped developing (and updating) mobile versions of Windows. That's the definition of discontinuation. Let it go.

            Not a focus isn't the same as stopped development, a new update for Windows 10 phone was released recently as well as month security and bug fixes. That's hardly no longer developed or supported. You have to also remember Microsoft sold the Nokia brand (now releasing android devices) who knows what the sale terms were. They are still focusing on mobile devices and the Lumia is still one of the best devices on the market for a number of reasons. If they had taken a leaf out of blackberry and added the rumoured support for android apps it would have been interesting. Why not celebrate innovation, goodness knows we need some more rather than bland products only catering to sales

              LOL security updates are an obligation, nothing more. They HAVE to push them out, or risk getting legal action from users.
              This is a FAR shot from 'active development', and if that's the best example you have, then you've proven my point perfectly.
              Especially the fact that you have to throw in a lot of 'if's and 'but's to make your case.
              Just let it go dude. It's dead.

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