A few days ago we told you that the Galaxy X, Samsung’s long-rumored foldable phone, might have a serious competitor next year, as Huawei confirmed that it’s going to make foldable phones of its own, with one set to debut in 2019.
But that might not be Samsung’s only headache when it comes to the Galaxy X. In fact, it turns out that Microsoft’s rumored Surface Phone is more real than ever, and the company is looking to launch the “new and disruptive” device category within the year.
The Surface device, code-named Andromeda, has been in development for a few years and seems to be the culmination of several similar projects that Microsoft worked on in the past. Tech-savvy readers will remember the Courier foldable tablet that was supposed to compete against the original iPad. A few years ago Microsoft also canceled an even more portable Surface laptop, the Surface Mini.
Of course, Microsoft could always cancel the Surface Phone, but evidence obtained by The Verge seems to suggest that Microsoft is determined to see this one through. Technology advanced to a point where it’s possible to design powerful yet pocketable devices that can run a full operating system like Windows 10 and offer a sophisticated feature like a bendable display.
According to a Microsoft internal email obtained by The Verge, Andromeda is a dual-display device that’s also going to be pocketable. Here’s how Microsoft describes the device:
It’s a new pocketable Surface device form factor that brings together innovative new hardware and software experiences to create a truly personal and versatile computing experience.
The computer “will blur the lines between mobile and stationary computing,” according to Microsoft.
The pocketable Surface features a wraparound display that bridges the gap of the hinge and looks a lot like this 3D concept, which was created in late December using existing Microsoft patents:
Andromeda devices might have stylus support and ship with apps that can capture notes.It’s unclear at this time whether these smartphones/laptops would rely on ARM chips from Qualcomm or whether Intel will provide the processors.
Microsoft aims to launch the device this year, with OEM partners supposed to create similar versions in the near future. The Verge mentions Asus and Lenovo as potential partners. A previous leak said Dell is also working on a similar gadget.Samsung is rumored to sell the Galaxy X for around $2,000 when it launches next year. It’ll be interesting to see how much Microsoft will charge for its versatile Surface computer. The report, however, makes no mention of a price.