Windows phone never actually enjoyed any form of major success. And even when Windows made the deal to acquire Nokia, it didn’t actually make much of a difference, albeit leading to the unfortunate demise of beloved Nokia itself. The Finnish company was a true leader back when neither iOS nor Android existed in the market. It’s quite sad really that Nokia had to meet such an unfortunate fate because it produced some amazing devices for its time and the market wasn’t exactly limited to flat unimaginative rectangle slabs of glass.
Microsoft have been speculating the band new Microsoft Phone for a while now, called the Microsoft Surface Phone, which could see a return to their Windows Phone OS, particularly Windows 10 Mobile OS. It’ll be interesting to see if this can finally turn things around for Microsoft this time around. Rumour has it that Microsoft has a secret team that is working on what is allegedly called the “ultimate mobile device”. Also while we’re at it, there are rumours too which peg the new Surface phone to be a mobile hybrid, meaning that you would be actually be able to convert the device into a fully functioning laptop when necessary.
This approach however begs the question of how Microsoft plans to do that with a Mobile OS, or would it some form of the modified windows 10S version. In any case a jack of all trades kind of device wouldn’t be all that new and many before have tried such approaches, although unsuccessfully if I might add. The fact of the matter is, nothing beats a fully loaded laptop or a desktop when it comes to productivity.
With that said, now let’s quickly get into the specifications of the device and see what to expect.
Design & Display:
The design of the device is still a mystery and the concept images leaked online aren’t confidence inspiring in regard to final release, although beautiful.If I had to speculate, then they wouldn’t really stray too far off from their design language used in the Surface laptops which is great since the surface notebook is quite a looker. Also, the hybrid approach means that it could have some kind of Bluetooth pairing tech that would allow pairing of 3rd party peripherals like keyboards to the device in its hybrid state.
Display wise, it is supposed to ship with a 5.5 inch QHD IPS display with a resolution of 1440×2560 pixels. That would mean a pixel per inch of 534 which is more than adequate. Now because the final design isn’t known, so it’s too early to speculate anything as MS might up the ante and decide to ship it with a bigger display with better panels like the surface notebook. The later has one of the best display’s fitted to any portable computers till date and it would be good to see a similar kind of panel here. This is a high possibility because Microsoft’s competitor Apple recently stunned the world with the launch of the new iPhone X (read 10) and it is about to set forth a significant shift in the industry for bezel less displays.
The Microsoft Surface Phone is rumoured to launch with a Snapdragon 835 which would be the company’s fastest mobile processor yet. It is an 8 core CPU with a combination of 4 Cores clocked at a beefy 2.45 GHzand 4 cores clocked at a slightly lower 1.9GHZ for maximum power efficiency. The Snapdragon 835 is an upgrade over the previous 830 and provides improved performance and power efficiency. The graphics is handled by the Adreno 540 which is currently also the fastest Mobile GPU at Snapdragon’s arsenal at the moment. What I find intriguing though is that Microsoft’s Operating Systems are built around the x86 instructions, meaning that System-on-Chips with lower instructions per set are bound to hit some kind of bottleneck. So it’ll be interesting to see at the least how Microsoft’s flashy new OS manages to cope with the lower instruction set CPU’s.
The phone is supposed to boast 4 Gigabytes of RAM which is plenty but with the competition offering 6/8GB of ram, it will be interesting to see if Microsoft’s move to do with just 4 Gigabytes was enough. At the end it all boils down to the type of multitasking that you want to do and the overall optimisation of the apps. More of everything isn’t always better as Apple has proven time and again with their devices.
The phone might ship with Microsoft’s all new Windows Phone v10 OS. The OS will be brand new from the ground and it’ll be interesting to see if Microsoft has actually taken user feedback in designing the OS because their previous Windows OS’es namely Windows Phone 7/8 were very limited in functionality. Incidentally, I would personally love to see the metro UI removed once and for all. Yes it is currently a signature design for Microsoft but I personally love the desktop icons much more. More information on the OS isn’t at the moment.
Camera and Storage:
The Phone will ship with a 16MP rear facing camera with support for with support for HDR, Exposure Compensation and ISO Control and LED flash. The Front will host an 8MP camera for selfies and video calls.
Storage wise it will ship with 64 Gigabytes of Primary memory and will have expandable storage with support for up to 128GB of SD cards. So there shouldn’t be storage issues for the phone.
Battery and Connectivity:
The phone will ship with a 3000mAh Li-ion battery. This is comparatively low for the device because it features a 2k screen and a top of the line processor. So, it might be useful to keep your expectations in check.
Connectivity wise, it’ll have support for all major 4G, 3G and 2G bands with 4G (VOLTE) support. Additionally it’ll ship with WiFi 802.11, b/g/n support, Bluetooth 4.0 and micro USB 2.0. It is curious to see why Microsoft hasn’t switched over to the much more flexible USB Type-C port that is common with most phones now.
Microsoft’s new device is yet to see the day of light at the moment. How Microsoft is going to compete with the likes of Apple and Google in the market remains a mystery but as always it’ll be finally good to see some competition with the monopolistic duo that has conquered the market for so long. The Microsoft Surface Phone price in India is expected to be around Rs.24990 and for the price it will be a fierce competitor in the mid-range budget segment.