Microsoft Surface Duo

Microsoft Surface Duo launching September 10

Microsoft Surface now available for pre-order in US

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Microsoft has announced that the Surface Duo will be available to pre-order in the US from today, with availability from September 10.

The Surface Duo is a foldable phone with two screens that can close like a book. The Duo can be used to make calls like a smartphone, but also operate like a double-screened tablet.

The hybrid phone will run on Google’s Android operating system. It has two 5.6-inch screens with organic LED displays. 

The phone can be used to make calls, but also more like a tablet or laptop, with the bottom screen used as a second screen or as a keyboard. The phone will also be compatible with stylus pens designed for Microsoft’s Surface range of tablets.

Unlike the foldable phones being developed by Samsung and Huawei, Microsoft’s uses a dual screen design. This means it does not have a single, flexible screen that must be folded up. 

It also will not feature 5G connectivity, while still having a price higher than Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 2, which does come with enhanced connectivity.

Microsoft Surface Duo

Microsoft is pitching the Duo as a more useful tool than a conventional smartphone, since it enables users to multitask with two separate apps or web pages at a time. CEO Satya Nadella, for instance, uses one screen to take notes and the other to read a book on Amazon’s Kindle app.

Inside, the device will have 6GB of RAM and a Qualcomm 855 snapdragon processor. However, its camera technology is expected to be limited compared to other high-end devices.

The new phone is being positioned as a device for remote working, with Windows apps such as Outlook and Office that have been set up to work across the two screens.

Panos Panay, Microsoft’s chief product officer, said:

“Smartphones with a single screen aren’t designed for you to easily do multiple things at once… Just like using two monitors at your desk, having two distinct screens lets you open up two apps side by side… so you can get things done quicker.”

Surface Duo has protection built in at every layer with deeply integrated hardware, firmware, and software to keep devices, identities, and data secure. Part of what makes this happen is that Microsoft built in their custom engineered Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) which enables full control over firmware components.

Microsoft delivers Enterprise-grade security to Surface Duo by writing or reviewing every line of firmware code in house, enabling Microsoft to respond directly and agilely, to potential firmware threats and to mitigate supply chain security risks. 

Additionally, Google provides a number of services layered on top of the OS that, when combined with Android OS security, help to continuously protect the Android user.

  • Custom engineered UEFI. Unique to Surface Duo, among Android devices, is Microsoft’s custom engineered Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) which enables full control over firmware components. Microsoft delivers Enterprise-grade security to Surface Duo by writing or reviewing every line of firmware code in house, enabling Microsoft to respond directly and agilely, to potential firmware threats and to mitigate supply chain security risks.
  • Verified Boot. Starting at the hardware level upon sign-in, Verified Boot strives to ensure executed code only comes from a trusted source. It establishes a full chain of trust — from hardware-protected root of trust to the bootloader, boot partition and other verified partitions. When Surface Duo boots up, each stage verifies the integrity and authenticity of the next stage before handing over execution.
  • App separation. Application sandboxing isolates and guards Android apps, preventing malicious apps from accessing private information. Mandatory, always-on encryption and key handling help protect data in transit and at rest — even if devices fall into the wrong hands. Encryption is protected with Keystore keys, which store cryptographic keys in a container, making it more difficult to extract from a device.
  • Google Play Protect. At the software layer, Surface Duo uses Google Play Protect threat detection, which scans all applications including public apps from Google Play, system apps updated by Microsoft and carriers, and sideloaded apps.
  • Microsoft Defender ATP. The enterprise grade antivirus and malware protection software for Window 10 is now available for Android devices managed from Intune.

Pre-orders are open now in the US via AT&T, Best Buy and the Microsoft online store.

Microsoft Surface Duo

Microsoft Surface Duo Specs

Operating SystemAndroid 10
DisplaySingle: 5.6 inch (1800×1350), 401 ppi, 4:3 aspect ratio
Opened: 8.1 inch (2700×1800), 401 ppi, 3:2 aspect ratio
Wide color gamut: 100% SRGB and 100% DCI-P3
Corning Gorilla Glass
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 855
NetworkWiFi-5 802.11ac (2.4/5GHz)
Bluetooth 5.0
LTE: 4×4 MIMO, Cat.18 DL / Cat 5 UL
SIMNano SIM + eSIM (no eSIM on AT&T model)
Network BandsFDD-LTE: 1,2,3,4,5,7,8,12,13,14,19 20,25,26,28,29,30,66
TD-LTE: 38,39,40,41,46
WCDMA: 1,2,5,8
GSM/GPRS: GSM-850, E-GSM-900, DCS-1800, PCS-1900
Memory6GB RAM
Storage128GB or 256GB UFS 3.0
Expandable StorageNone
Camera11MP, ƒ/2.0 1.0um, PDAF, 84.0° diagonal FOV
Optimized with AI for front and rear
AudioMono speaker
Dual mic with noise suppression and echo cancellation
Qualcomm aptX Adaptive
Ports1x USB-C 3.1
Up to 15.5 hours of Local Video Playback
Up to 10 days of Standby Time
Up to 27 hours of Talk Time
Fast Charging using 18W in-box power supply
PenSurface Pen (not included)
DimensionsOpen: 145.2mm (H) x 186.9mm (W) x 4.8mm (T)
Closed: 145.2mm (H) x 93.3mm (W) x 9.9mm (T at hinge)
Weight250 grams

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