Microsoft has been working on foldable devices for quite some time, with major patents being pushed through at the end of last year. The mysterious new device codenamed Andromeda reared its head last week thanks to a leak, supposedly creating an entirely “new and disruptive” category of handsets under the Surface moniker.
Confirming many suspicions about Microsoft’s impending device, The Verge received an internal email from Microsoft that claimed Andromeda to be “a new “pocketable Surface device form factor.” This includes its dual screens, a foldable chassis and a pen stylus reminiscent of the cancelled Courier device.
Microsoft’s intention with Andromeda is to reportedly create a “new and disruptive” device that attempts to bridge the gap between PC and mobile, not solely defined by its unique foldable form-factor. In fact, the email boldly claims that the device is set to bring “innovative new hardware and software experiences to create a truly personal and versatile computing experience.”
Previously, it’s been reported that Microsoft is set to ditch its Windows 10 Mobile legacy code, focusing on a brand new operating system dubbed Windows Core OS. Like its predecessor, this is the company’s attempt at penetrating the mobile market, without sacrificing much of the functionality provided on its mainstream Windows 10. To do this, it’s understood to have an increased focus on the Universal Windows Platform (UWP).
— David Breyer (@D_Breyer) December 18, 2017
Before readers roll their eyes and scoff at yet another of Microsoft’s alleged attempts at the mobile market, this is also an effort to simplify the market. As it stands, manufacturers have to choose between Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Pro, Windows 10 S, Windows 10 Mobile and many more, making compromises along the way. Windows Core OS attempts to bring modularity into the equation, allowing developers to build on top while remaining malleable enough to transfer between systems of different form-factors with ease.
Although the device is said to be able to function much like traditional smartphones by taking calls and fitting in the user’s pocket, it will still be bogged down if it struggles with a lack of applications like its predecessor. UWP is set to combat this, alongside progressive web applications (PWA), however it’ll be an uphill battle in an already established duopoly between Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS.
It’s worth taking all of this information with a pinch of salt, as Microsoft has not publicly acknowledged anything related to Andromeda throughout its years' worth of leaks. Unfortunately, there's no telling when there might be official confirmation of the device.
KitGuru Says: Many people are asking where this device will fit in the market, however I think that its unusual form-factor could prove a useful test for Microsoft if reports are true surrounding its modular Windows Core OS. Do you like the idea of Microsoft’s leaked Andromeda?