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From what I’m told, Microsoft has secretly been testing a normal Surface-branded phone with Android. Sources say, “It is in the testing phase and may never be released so they can focus on the Surface Duo series.”
The design is said to be remarkably similar to what “a Surface would look like as a regular smartphone.”
The current phone Microsoft sells is the Surface Duo 2 – it’s a foldable that runs Android just like the previous Surface Duo. However, the new phone in testing, according to those familiar with the matter, features a non-folding 6.5″ display.
Its supposed screen size is the same as the previous Max variants of the iPhone XS and iPhone 11 Pro. This display size would be a great target for Microsoft, and depending on what features the phone offers, it could actually sell very well.
It would be the first normal Microsoft smartphone (not foldable) since the Microsoft Lumia, which was a failed Windows Phone. The Windows Phone died because it didn’t have proper app development. Developers didn’t create apps for Windows 10 Mobile like they did for Apple’s App Store or Google’s Play Store.
If this device runs Android, it will obviously be well optimized for the Google Play Store, fixing Microsoft’s previous problem.
If Microsoft can pull off a successful Surface phone that is not foldable, it may also optimize it with its own silicon. I’ve heard, as well as others, Microsoft has begun working on its own silicon to rival Apple’s A and M series chips, as well as Google’s new Tensor chip for the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro.
That would bring huge advantages to Microsoft as this device could effectively contend with the competition, but it will likely not be as powerful as the iPhone, just like Google’s Tensor cannot compete with Apple’s chip offerings.
To be impactful, Microsoft needs to make sure that it packs in better battery life, as well as 120Hz, and of course, why not make a pro model? but I haven’t heard anything about that at this time. Microsoft also needs to improve upon its cameras and feature a triple-camera setup like its competition offers.
Is Microsoft’s “regular” phone too little too late?
[The information provided in this article has NOT been confirmed by Apple and may be speculation. Provided details may not be factual. Take all rumors, tech or otherwise, with a grain of salt.]