Microsoft Surface Duo visits the FCC; device could be released as soon as next month
Microsoft reportedly wants to announce the dual-screened Surface Duo before August 5th. The latter date happens to be when Samsung plans on holding its Unpacked 2020 event and among the phones that will be unveiled that day should be the Galaxy Z Fold 2. The latter is the sequel to last year's Galaxy Fold which was the first foldable from a major phone manufacturer.
Late August, early-to-mid September release seen for the Surface Duo
Microsoft still might have enough time to make its wish come true and the software giant is checking off the boxes. Recently, a device that could very well be the Surface Duo paid a visit to the FCC (via Droid-Life). Described in the documentation as a "phablet device," it appears as though the productivity tool will sport a model number of 1930. Another part of the documentation nearly screams out Surface Duo. A paragraph in the Final Test Report reads, "The EUT (Equipment Under Test" was investigated in three orthogonal orientations X/Y/Z. Additionally, the EUT was investigated in four configurations with both screens: folded and closed/open 90 degrees/flat 180 degrees/folded and open (italics ours). It was determined that the EUT in flat 180 degrees with X (Flatbed) orientation was worst-case orientation therefore all final radiated testing was performed with the EUT in flat 180 degrees at X (Flatbed)."
The Surface Duo comes with a Surface Pen
The Surface Duo, to the chagrin of some, will be powered by Android-Android 10 to be precise. An update to Android 11 will take place slightly afterward. So there will be no app gap here and in fact, Microsoft worked with Google to make sure that its apps take advantage of the dual-screen layout. Yes, there is a hinge between the two screens, but there will be no creases. Speaking of the displays, the latest rumored specs call for the Duo to be equipped with a pair of 5.6-inch AMOLED screens. Both should have a 1350 x 1800 resolution and when fully opened they would combine to provide users with a tablet-sized 8.3-inch screen with that aforementioned hinge down the middle.
Powering the Duo might be the Snapdragon 855 Mobile Platform, one-generation old silicon that would help keep the price of the device down. Also helping in those efforts is the lack of a 5G modem in the Duo. 6GB of memory is included along with storage options of 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB; an 11MP camera will perform double duty as the phone's main and selfie snapper and a 3460mAh capacity battery will keep the lights on. There will be a fingerprint scanner providing the necessary biometric security, and we should not forget that the Surface Pen will be included.
The FCC included a chart that showed all of the connectivity options supported by the device and it included NFC. This would suggest that the Google Pay mobile payment system will be included as a default app on the Duo. However, the test units as currently configured supposedly do not include NFC which would result in the lack of support for mobile payments.
Last we saw of the Surface Duo, it was being held by Microsoft Chief Product Officer Panos Panay and it was inside a rubber case. Like most phones these days, the Duo will have an FCC e-label instead of a physical one. It can be accessed (once the phone is released, of course) by going to Settings > About > regulatory labels.
The FCC visit is often one of the last steps before a phone is introduced, Windows Central says that the device is in the final stage of production validation. This testing should soon be over with the production of the Surface Duo beginning afterward. This points to the possibility of a release in late August or September.
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