Microsoft Surface Phone: still in the cards?

Microsoft Surface Phone: still in the cards?
A year ago Microsoft removed phone-related API's from Windows 10 builds. This basically solidified that they were shifting focus away from having any software developed for a unified Windows running across devices. The interface would be needed for a Windows device with LTE connection to perform phone-style tasks like making calls, using voicemail and sending messages. Users who were hoping for a Windows PC phone were sadly let down here. 


Microsoft has brought it back, for now..


Well it appears now Microsoft has placed the mobile API's back into Windows in Redstone 5. Redstone 5 will be the Fall Creators update for 2018. This has re-ignited speculation that Microsoft may be planning to release the rumored Surface Phone at the end of this year. Now to be clear, this rumor has circulated every year, for several years now. Some say Microsoft's Project Andromeda may be the Surface Phone, while others say they are two different devices. 


What is an API? 


In the most basic of terms, an API (application-programming interface) is a set of tools and instructions for developers. It basically gives them the ability and framework to develop software for a certain platform with certain capabilities. Microsoft previously removed this, which meant developers were unable to create programs that could use telephony tools on Windows. 

Will we see the Surface Phone?


Even with the previous removal of the API, Microsoft continued working on ARM-driven Windows always connected PC's. These LTE connected computers that run Windows on Snapdragon chipsets have already started hitting the market. The return of this API does not really fit with how these computers are being marketed. Therefore, some expect this is opening the door for developers to begin working on programs that will run on a future Surface Phone. The rumored device is said to be a pocket PC with a stylus, phone capabilities and folding screen. Stories regarding the folding screen race have been everywhere lately and mention everyone from Samsung to ZTE, yet very few of them mention Microsoft. Could it be that Microsoft will be the first this time around? Their patents for folding screen technology have been appearing across the web for years now. If this is their return to the mobile market, they have played their cards close to the chest this time around. 

source: MSPoweruser

image courtesy of windowslatest

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24 Comments

2. antroid

Posts: 386; Member since: Jan 24, 2018

Unless it will be powered by Android I dont see who will gonna buy it if the whole platform is doomed already

12. LiveFaith

Posts: 453; Member since: Jul 04, 2015

Weird. Why is this even a thing? No apps makes this platform DOA. Nobody is going to develop for them if they make anemic release. They went "all in" before and ended up screwing everyone who invested there. So, many of those folks are getting screwed of their own volition again. Only thing I see here is click bait for the relative handful of WinMob die hards still thrashing around.

16. Matthew_Mills

Posts: 21; Member since: Apr 08, 2018

The idea is to develop apps for the foldable phone/pocket PC. This would be a first for the market, which is why Samsung and everyone else are currently exploring the technology.

19. SIGPRO

Posts: 2815; Member since: Oct 03, 2012

You need to do some research before making a fool out of yourself! Andromeda Windows Core OS will be able to run ARM. So x86 apps, and we all know there are millions of x86 apps out there!

15. Chuck007

Posts: 1410; Member since: Mar 02, 2014

My thoughts exactly! Would be great if it's Android heavily skinned to resemble the Windows 10 UI though.

18. SIGPRO

Posts: 2815; Member since: Oct 03, 2012

If it can run x86 apps then what is the issue?

25. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3123; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

Scalability. Legacy x86 apps were designed for keyboard and mouse and are impossible to navigate on a small screen. Windows 8.1 was about as good as it got when it came to touch interface as long as you stayed out of desktop mode. Windows 10 totally ruined tablet mode. I'd rather Microsoft revise Edge for mobile to enable notifications and see where PWAs lead. So far the few that are available function quite well on Windows 10 Mobile.

20. Nine1Sickness

Posts: 896; Member since: Jan 30, 2011

M$ is too stupid to build a phone people want. I’d buy a windows phone in a heartbeat if it ran full windows 7-10 pro.

3. IAMBLCKJ3ZUS

Posts: 402; Member since: Sep 29, 2015

Android won't be the future if it doesn't evolve. The thing windows 10 could have been a PC experience in a phone is what gave me hope.

13. LiveFaith

Posts: 453; Member since: Jul 04, 2015

Do you seriously like the PC Experience? I'm fascinated. What experience there could you possibly want to bring to a phone?

4. rouyal

Posts: 1573; Member since: Jan 05, 2018

A phone that is a full fledged Windows PC (not just Continuum) if plugged into an hdmi port would get my attention. Could use the phone as a trackpad, keyboard, and speaker if needed. Not saying I’d buy it for sure, but it would perk my ears.

21. Nine1Sickness

Posts: 896; Member since: Jan 30, 2011

Heck, even a phone that’ll run windows XP would be better than anything MS ever came out with so far.

5. Farcaster

Posts: 158; Member since: Apr 16, 2018

After terrible experience with my Surface pro 4 (along with every previous MS product I've had the displeasure of using), I will never purchase from them again. Their stuff are only good for looking at not using.

9. Cat97

Posts: 1861; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Actually, I had a Surface Pro 4 and although the screen broke (corner flickering), I replaced it with the Surface Pro 5 because no one else does 3:2 screens (great for productivity) and no one uses the powerful U-series laptops in their convertible laptops.

22. Nine1Sickness

Posts: 896; Member since: Jan 30, 2011

Surface Pro is a cool device. Especially with its enormous 4GB RAM.

6. starjammer

Posts: 16; Member since: Jan 08, 2009

I’ve been waiting for a full windows experience on a phone( continuum doesnt’t count). After the I-mate vaporware, I gave up. If they do it I’ll give them one final shot.

14. LiveFaith

Posts: 453; Member since: Jul 04, 2015

See Q above. What alternate universe do you have to live in to want to bring the "Windows Experience" to a phone. I use android now. But throw in iOS too. I cannot in a thousand lifetimes imagine how the windows experience could be desired. Are you talking about deep robust power features from a PC when you say that? If your talking features, then I can see a niche. But Lord, the mobile experience on either mobile OS is light years better than any "experience" Windows PC could ever hope to have.

7. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

the Andromeda device is REA:L. A well informed Microsoft insider has gotten info that later this year Microsoft will sell a folding 2 screen Mini Tablet that has a built in 4G cell phone capability. Microsoft will not market it as Surface smart phone or any replacement for any Cell phone even though it will have a built in 4G Cell phone. it will be Hybrid device part PC Tablet part cell phone. a new Category of devices no one has made before. the insider said that Microsoft will sell a limited quantity of the Andromeda foldable 2 screen Tablets so folks when it goes on preorder sale buy it quick to make sure you get yours.

8. 7thspaceman

Posts: 1597; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

I would buy an Andromeda hybrid PC Tablet/4g Cell phone because I would like to work with a mobile device that has a bigger screen than a Cell phone has. I would use a blue tooth headset to use it's 4G Cell phone to send and receive voice calls. Some people even today use a blue tooith headset to send and receive voice calls with their cell phones.

10. Matthew_Mills

Posts: 21; Member since: Apr 08, 2018

I'm looking forward to this release. I hope Microsoft is the first to the market otherwise it will be rough for them once again. As a side note, I use a 15" surface book 2 for almost everything and have had a great experience. My surface pro 3 performed well too.

17. Nimbus

Posts: 442; Member since: Apr 02, 2018

I'm interested in buying a windows PC/tablet hybrid phones,really excited for this new OS since i'm really bore of android and ios development on anythig new.This time it will have all set of necessary of apps we need in everyday life.Bring it on let the naysayers spread apps hate on it even it's a new catergory type of device with some relevant apps for Windows 10.People will going to buy it for their need,purpose n so do me.Later it will get improve more with updates and new generation of its products with yearly release of it.

23. japkoslav

Posts: 1499; Member since: Feb 19, 2017

Who cares, M$ killed Windows Phones. It's dead, any resurrection attempt is too late. Who cares for 0,0X% of the mobile market.

24. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3123; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

For being such a dead OS it sure brings the haters out. Live and let live.

26. HPEliteX3

Posts: 1; Member since: Apr 23, 2018

Coming from a die-hard Windows Phone/Mobile user (Lumia 928 for 4.5 years, HP Elite X3 currently), I don't see this going anywhere with Microsoft. Had Microsoft supported the failed Windows 10 mobile effort for a few more years than they did, even if it was a negative monetarily, they would have kept a user base to slide into a supposed Surface Phone. However, after having the "device" rug pulled out from under so many users, there is no faith in Microsoft supporting any mobile effort, what-so-ever. I will not buy another Windows phone product, and ask my family, I was a die-hard supporter. I can't even imagine any Android or ios user buying one of these supposed Surface devices.

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