Microsoft has become the latest tech retailer to announce a folding phone, marking its first venture into Android smartphones in its history.
The Surface Duo was revealed at Microsoft’s annual hardware event yesterday, featuring dual 5.6-inch screens which rotate on a 360-degree hinge.
This means that the phone can be closed like a book with the back of both screen facing out when not in use, folded the other way to be used like a standard-sized smartphone, or halfway so the user can utilise both screens at one.
Unlike the Samsung Galaxy Fold, which sees its dual screens merge into a single display when unfolded, the Surface Duo will have a permanent gap between the screens.
This allows users to operate the Duo as a laptop, with one screen acting as a keyboard or game pad while the other is used as a display.
Microsoft will use Android as its main operating system for the first time, but has built a special operating system designed for dual screens called Windows 10X on top.
“Surface Duo is the first Surface to fit in your pocket”, Microsoft’s chief product officer Panos Panay said.
“Surface Duo brings together the best of Microsoft productivity experiences, Android apps and Surface hardware design into a single device you can take anywhere. And, yes, it makes phone calls.”
Microsoft’s folding phone is not set to go on sale until late next year, and there have been no details released regarding price or where the phone will be available.