After a long development phase, Microsoft finally launched the Surface Duo last year. The dual-screen device was touted to take the productivity aspect to a whole new level, but despite some neat optimizations by Microsoft, bugs plagued the software. And on top of that, dated hardware and terrible camera performance ensured that the Surface Duo never turned out what the company envisioned it to be. Now, it appears that Microsoft is back to the drawing board, working on a successor – tentatively called Surface Duo 2 – that will come with upgraded innards and a more polished software experience in the fall season.
Now, the report doesn’t add anything specific, but Microsoft is rumored to add a 5G-ready SoC to the Surface Duo 2, unlike the Snapdragon 855 inside its predecessor that was already outdated by the time the device started shipping. And of course, a phone that misses out on 5G for a $999 asking price – that too after a price cut from its original $1,400 premium– was always going to be a hard sell in 2020.
Notably, Microsoft is investing more resources and efforts to improve the software experience on the Surface Duo 2. And that is of critical importance, as the software issues of its predecessor were a little too many. “While Windows Phone was really well thought out and designed for ease-of-use, the Surface Duo’s Android implementation was not. With all of the overlapping, non-discover-able gestures, it seems like it was designed to be frustrating to use,” my colleague Adam Z. Lein wrote in his Surface Duo review.
Additionally, Microsoft is also rumored to be working on improving the camera of its next dual-screen foldable phone. The first-gen Surface Duo received its fair share of criticism for its camera hardware, which included just a single camera that performed significantly worse than even a phone which costs half as much.
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