Microsoft has started to roll out its smartphones for the first time since it halted its smartphone business more than four years ago.
The company commences taking orders for the surface Duo, a new dual-screen smart device which costs $1,399 and will begin shipping in September.
The high-priced gadget is arriving during the worst economic downfall, with unemployment and consumers forced to stay at homes to avoid the coronavirus pandemic.
Microsoft is pitching the Duo as a more useful tool, it allows users to multitask with two separate apps at a time.
The Duo has two 5.6-inch displays and is a slim 4.8 millimetres thick. Microsoft engineers say that instead of adopting a single folding screen they chose to connect two displays on a hinge because it allows for sturdier glass.
“It’s thin, it’s sleek, it’s probably one of the sexiest devices we’ve built,” said Panos Panay, Microsoft’s chief product officer. Adding a mobile device to its Surface line of computers is a reversal for Microsoft after its short-lived ownership of smartphone-maker Nokia and its difficulties in transitioning its Windows operating system to the mobile era.
Apple and Google’s Android long ago cornered the market on phone operating systems, but Microsoft’s rare partnership with Google means Duo comes with a suite of Android apps.
Moreover, Samsung this summer also unveiled new smart Galaxy phones that will cost roughly $1,000 to $1,300.
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