And while Microsoft is increasing its focus on hardware, one product that’s missing from its lineup is a smaller device that can be carried in the pocket.
While this doesn’t necessarily have to be a smartphone, Microsoft has recently been spotted working on dual-screen model referred to as Andromeda, which could help the company invent a new product category.
However, people familiar with the matter said Andromeda was delayed until 2019, with Microsoft even considering giving up on the device entirely.
“It’s absolutely my baby”
But as Panos Panay, head of the Surface unit, says, a so-called “pocketable” Surface device isn’t dead and the company could still bring it to the market at some point.
“It’s absolutely my baby,” he told The Verge in an interview. “We will invent and we will create when products are right. We can’t bring new categories into the world and not be a place where customers need it.”
Judging from the patents that have made the rounds several times lately, Andromeda could be a dual-screen model supporting several form factors depending on the orientation of the displays. Microsoft, however, appears to be playing the safe card with Andromeda, and only wants to bring such a new idea to the market when customers are ready to embrace it.
“Right now we see people use these products in ways that are blowing my mind, it’s inspiring. I think Surface Hub 2 is ready. I think any other form factor you haven’t seen yet we’ve gotta get right, we’ve got to make sure we keep inventing to make it perfect,” Panay continued.
Andromeda is now expected to see daylight, if it indeed gets the go-ahead, sometime next year, but as said, Microsoft could kill off the project at any point in case it doesn’t advance as intended.