Surface Duo enthusiasts who were eagerly anticipating a major update from Microsoft this year may need to accept the reality that it might not be happening. The company has chosen to maintain radio silence on all matters related to Surface Duo and has provided responses indicating that they have “nothing to share” when questioned about the product.
Recently, I inquired with Microsoft about the status of Surface Duo 2, and a company spokesperson responded with the same cryptic answer, offering “nothing to share.”
My internal sources suggest that Surface Duo 2 has indeed been discontinued, which shouldn’t come as a surprise since the smartphone is approaching two years of age, and restocking it wouldn’t make financial sense.
It’s essential to understand that discontinuation doesn’t imply a lack of support, although it certainly seems that way. Existing Surface Duo 2 customers will continue to receive monthly security updates until October 2024.
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However, whether Microsoft has plans to provide any further major Android OS versions remains a lingering question.
In fact, I also probed Microsoft about their intentions to deliver more significant Android OS versions for Surface Duo users. This could have been an opportunity for the company to reassure its loyal customers that they haven’t been forgotten. Nevertheless, the response was once again a disappointing “nothing to share.”
According to my sources, the majority of the Surface Duo OS team has been reassigned to focus on developing Teams Rooms on Android, which has become a major priority for the Android Microsoft Platform & Experiences team (AMPX) this year.
As a result, it appears that, a few months ago, the company had no plans to roll out Android 13 for Surface Duo.
While there is a possibility that the team may return to Surface Duo in the future, I find it unlikely. Before active development on Surface Duo OS ceased, the company was working on several new features that would have complemented Android 12L.
These proposed features included an innovative Windows 365-powered Continuum mode, which would enable users to log into a Cloud PC when connecting the Surface Duo to an external display.
Additionally, Microsoft had plans to introduce an AI-based camera eye-correction and inking on the lock screen for quick note-taking.
Sadly, there has been no progress on these features for several months, strongly indicating that the product has been abandoned, much like how Microsoft treated Windows 10 Mobile in its final years. While technically still “supported,” there was no active development during that phase.
I would be thrilled to discover that my predictions are incorrect, but it appears that Microsoft has moved on from Surface Duo. I previously reported that the Surface team had abandoned plans for a dual-screen Surface Duo 3 and shifted their focus toward developing a true foldable phone. If this device ever hits the market, it won’t be labeled as a ‘Duo’ product.
In addition, users on Reddit have reported that Microsoft is now offering refunds to Surface Duo owners who have been trying to get their devices replaced under warranty. This is because Microsoft has exhausted its stock of Surface Duo replacement units in most regions and appears to prefer issuing refunds over fixing the devices.
In conclusion, the future of Surface Duo seems uncertain, and all signs point to the project being put on hold indefinitely.
While it’s disheartening for enthusiasts, it’s essential to recognize that technology companies continuously evolve, and Microsoft’s decision may be driven by a strategic shift in its product lineup. As we await further updates, users of existing Surface Duo devices can at least expect continued security support until October 2024.