We posted some renders last night of a new Microsoft patent for a dual-screened computer which is likely Microsoft’s mythical Surface Phone.
While those renders gave use a pretty good look at the device and how Microsoft expects us to use it, they were not exactly detailed, unlike the image above, which hails from the extended patent filling and clearly shows that Microsoft is not simply doodling on a napkin, but has detailed plans for the device, similar to the Surface Studio patents which leaked well before the device came to market.
One example of the level of detail of development is this design for a modified low profile USB-C port, presumably designed to keep the device as slim as possible when folded.
The patent also mentions items such as a special low profile Surflink connector to connect the ribbon cables of each half.
Another interesting element from the patent is the suggestion that the two glass sides can be folded, with the radius of the edges eliminating the fold, but clearly leaving a dip or crease.
Microsoft however also mentions the edge may be flat, and the gap being eliminated by translation ie. movement of the two edges to being in close proximity due to special hinge design.
Some of our readers have been saying Microsoft has just been filling patents with no clear evidence of progress to release, but I believe the volume and detail of the patents suggest exactly the opposite, and that work is indeed progressing. Of course, that still does not mean the device has not fallen by the wayside, but we do have to recall that Microsoft’s executives continue to talk about game-changing designs coming, with Satya Nadella, for example, saying earlier this year:
“So in some sense when you say will we’ll make more phones, I’m sure we’ll make more phones, but they may not look like phones that are there today.”
We should also not forget all the dual-screened references in Microsoft’s software and operating system and all the other rumours.
While I do not think the above device could replace an Android smartphone (due to the need for my parking app for example) I do think it could make an amazing laptop replacement for a small segment of users who value mobility over everything else.
Do our readers agree? Let us know below.