- Microsoft is launching the Surface Duo, a $1,400 foldable Android smartphone that has two screens, on September 10.
- After getting a closer look at the Duo’s design, I came away impressed with the phone’s premium glass build and flexible hinge.
- Microsoft’s approach differs from that of rivals like Samsung, Huawei, and Motorola, indicating that major tech companies are still figuring out what the next major evolution of the smartphone looks like.
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Microsoft is the latest tech giant to enter the foldable phone race with its Surface Duo, a $1,400 smartphone that comes with two screens joined together with a 360-degree hinge.
The phone launches on September 10, coming just after Samsung unveiled its third foldable phone and major phone makers like Huawei and Motorola have launched devices with bendable screens.
The Surface Duo runs on Google’s Android software, and the company is positioning it as a mobile productivity machine, much like its other Surface products. During a press briefing earlier this month, Panos Panay, Microsoft’s chief product officer, showed how the phone can be used in a variety of different poses, demonstrating how apps can automatically adjust to whichever orientation the device is being used in.
Microsoft’s approach differs from that of rivals like Samsung, Huawei, and Motorola, all of which have created phones with screens that physically bend and fold rather than attaching two screens to create one device. Some devices aim to offer a more modern version of the flip phone, as the Galaxy Z Flip and Motorola Razr do, while others like the Huawei Mate X, Surface Duo, and Galaxy Z Fold 2 combine the elements of both a phone and a tablet.
I just got my hands on the Surface Duo, and it feels like a well-built, premium phone that could serve as a promising entrant in the foldable phone space. But I’ll have to wait until I’ve actually spent time using it to really weigh in on its value and what it brings to the market.
Here’s a closer look at the phone’s design.