Windows 10X, a pathway back to Windows phone?

Jez Corden

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Microsoft's Surface Duo is powered by Android, but what if the Windows 10X running on the Surface Neo could get enough developer support to bring back a full Windows-powered mini tablet/phone, hybrid, thing?

What do you think?

 

Jamie Brahm

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I think that's probably the long game.

Get developer support through the Neo, windows core, PWA, windows on arm, build it up whilst the duo is building steam on the market (and I think it will, the buzz is real).

Right now a windows powered phone would be a harder sell. But later, probably not so much. Feels like they are doing this right. Windows issue for 'one os' is 'shrinking'. So they should be progressively shrinking products and getting users onboard. Neo seems to do that nicely - it's mostly all touch, dual screen, small size.
 

dpz

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I agree. I think that they are going to encourage developers to utilize Xamarin or some other Universal code to make apps that will work for dual screen devices. Then they'll take those apps and make it work through a container (or maybe directly) on Windows 10X.
That way, in the end, any app that is made for Duo will work for Neo.

If this is the plan, then the question will become: Will it work?
 

sd4f

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I've read the comment elsewhere, but tend to agree. By launching the Duo and Neo together, one of them is doomed and I suspect it's the Neo. I just can't see it getting any further than Surface RT did.
 

KJW23

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KJW23

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Zach laptop
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Zach phone
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justjun555

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It will be interesting to see what changes Microsoft bring in ui/ux ,tablet/desktop mode , how system handles win 32 apps.
 
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justjun555

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I've read the comment elsewhere, but tend to agree. By launching the Duo and Neo together, one of them is doomed and I suspect it's the Neo. I just can't see it getting any further than Surface RT did.

Why do you think like that ?unlike surface rt Neo is not handicapped to store apps only . It packs intel chip inside & can run x86 programs as well.

As a laptop or tablet it is as capable as surface pro ( functionality wise ).

It's versatile small pc that is aimed at General laptop / tablet users & it should get moderate success like 1st or 2nd generation surface pro. From there on with each future iteration it can build on it's success & create dual screen hybrids category with support from other oem's through products like neo , asus precog etc.

If Windows 10x doesn't have any covets with win32 legacy apps support etc. Then I see no reason why it can't get at least half as much success as other surface products.

I don't think duo & neo's success chances collides with each other. They are both aimed at completely different categories. There is one big fundamental difference between them - one fits in pocket & other one not. hence that will settle their different fates.
 
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DavidBS1989

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It would be great to have a Surface Duo running with Windows, I can't understant why MS launched a cool device like this running Android.
 

sd4f

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Why do you think like that ?unlike surface rt Neo is not handicapped to store apps only . It packs intel chip inside & can run x86 programs as well.

...

I don't think duo & neo's success chances collides with each other. They are both aimed at completely different categories. There is one big fundamental difference between them - one fits in pocket & other one not. hence that will settle their different fates.

I'm not disagreeing with you, but these foldables sole party trick relies on software to take advantage of it. I have my doubts developers will be burning the midnight oil to make apps or update them to take advantage of the Neo, I don't think it will even happen for the Duo (albeit not for the fault of the Duo, but rather the state of android.)

Now, why I think what I do is that the coverage is basically ignoring the Neo, it's definitely in the shadow of the Duo, and Panos Panay also said it with his reasoning of why they went with Android; it has the apps you want.

Now one thing I neglected to mention is that it all ultimately will be determined by price. The Neo has an excellent use case if it's relatively cheap, but then what of the surface go? So I don't think it will be cheap.

Ultimately, I don't know, I'm only speculating, but again, from the wider coverage, outside of microsoft fans, most of the coverage is on the Duo.
 

justjun555

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As I said above duo will always remain more popular because it's pocketable & if it succeeds it will pull way more sales than neo.

As for neo I see it as a laptop first device. It's a new era laptop/2 in 1 & That's the best way Microsoft can sell it imo.It will sale just like other premium laptops not like phones meaning way less numbers in volume compared to phones.
Neo may not get much developer support but it will function well as 2 in 1. It can surely be category defining device when other oem's launch their dual screen designs eg. Asus project precog.

Regarding software taking advantage of this form factor it all depends on Microsoft's efforts in making this category of devices successful & bring change in industry.
General pc users don't care about store & I don't think it situation is going to Change at all for lot more years ahead.
I think future iteration of duo will be evolve into galaxy f like device when corning launches bendable glass.
But neo will remain as it is (dual screen) with multiple screen size options
 

Drael646464

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As I said above duo will always remain more popular because it's pocketable & if it succeeds it will pull way more sales than neo.

As for neo I see it as a laptop first device. It's a new era laptop/2 in 1 & That's the best way Microsoft can sell it imo.It will sale just like other premium laptops not like phones meaning way less numbers in volume compared to phones.
Neo may not get much developer support but it will function well as 2 in 1. It can surely be category defining device when other oem's launch their dual screen designs eg. Asus project precog.

Regarding software taking advantage of this form factor it all depends on Microsoft's efforts in making this category of devices successful & bring change in industry.
General pc users don't care about store & I don't think it situation is going to Change at all for lot more years ahead.
I think future iteration of duo will be evolve into galaxy f like device when corning launches bendable glass.
But neo will remain as it is (dual screen) with multiple screen size options

I tend to think the exact opposite. PC has high margin development, so vastly more motive to build specialised software, and in addition, the dual screen format for windows 10x is licensable, so third party OEMs can replicate the machine.

Android by comparison is populated by low margin software, built entirely around volume sales, and writing specialised software for it, is almost pointless. If google licenses a dual screened set-up to other phone makers, it also seems unlikely they'll be able to make anything with the elegance of that hinge, and without it, there's not as many possibilities and variations that work for a smaller device.

That said, it seems quite likely to me that folding screens will be a market trainwreck, both in terms of durability, and pricepoint, and perhaps the Duo will be the only one left standing, in which case it might do very well.

What foldables need to do, at this early point is do what the first mobile phones did, or what the hololens is doing - find rich users with a niche application to throw money at it, so it can be built out, and while the manufacturing processes mature. It's not at all clear most foldables are doing this, instead relying on novelty hype, which IMO, only works up until 1k USD at the most. You get to above 2k like the galaxy fold, and what you have doesn't fund it's own future iterations.

But I wouldn't even begin to buy into the notion that high end, specialised folding phones will sell like midrange and price point propositions do currently, and given laptops, including hybrids are the fastest selling kind of PC, I wouldn't stake money on one catergory being higher than the other just yet.

If I were to pick one, though, I'd pick the hybrid laptop - it has a clear, and familiar use case. There may well be a high price point use case for a multi-tasking phone, but it's novel. As for a tablet seamless design - yes it has a use case, but not generally associated with the level of money it's asking for.

IMO, the biggest issue for microsoft, is they have two similar devices, and if they don't share some kind of app platform, that could spell trouble for both of them. That they have two devices with similar design could be a huge strength - in that each could feed into the other. But if they are disperate app platforms, and difficult to write for both, it will drain from both.

They need to have a shared app language.
 
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Razius

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It would be great to have a Surface Duo running with Windows, I can't understant why MS launched a cool device like this running Android.

Panos said it himself. Everything points to apps. They are not trying to sell this device to us old hardcore windows phone fans. They are trying to sell this to the masses. Sadly the current form of OS's rely on apps for both iOS and Android. Now if Microsoft could create a conversion process that is so user friendly that you can bring over all these apps to Microsofts mobile ecosystem then it won't work.
 

DavidBS1989

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Panos said it himself. Everything points to apps. They are not trying to sell this device to us old hardcore windows phone fans. They are trying to sell this to the masses. Sadly the current form of OS's rely on apps for both iOS and Android. Now if Microsoft could create a conversion process that is so user friendly that you can bring over all these apps to Microsofts mobile ecosystem then it won't work.

Yes, but where is the problem with running Windows? If they put a Windows OS similar (and compatible) with the computer's one, they will have a portable device, a smartphone, running with all their computer Apps, which are a lot and very useful, and most of them are from Android's (Netflix, Spotify, YouTube)… Today's, the same app that is in Android is also for Windows computer OS.

And with that base, they can start to create their own specific apps without working for the comptence.

The Android OS in Surface Duo would be a good start if they are thinking yet in this "conversion process" and launching a second device with Windows in the future, but I really doubt that this is the plan. I think the problem with Microsoft always is the few information that they give to us.
 

Laura Knotek

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Yes, but where is the problem with running Windows? If they put a Windows OS similar (and compatible) with the computer's one, they will have a portable device, a smartphone, running with all their computer Apps, which are a lot and very useful, and most of them are from Android's (Netflix, Spotify, YouTube)… Today's, the same app that is in Android is also for Windows computer OS.

And with that base, they can start to create their own specific apps without working for the comptence.

The Android OS in Surface Duo would be a good start if they are thinking yet in this "conversion process" and launching a second device with Windows in the future, but I really doubt that this is the plan. I think the problem with Microsoft always is the few information that they give to us.
Most PC users run traditional x86 and x64 programs, not Store apps. Those do not translate to mobile devices.
 

DavidBS1989

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Most PC users run traditional x86 and x64 programs, not Store apps. Those do not translate to mobile devices.

Yes, but is supposed to this Windows 10X in mobile devices will run these x86/64 programs, really? We wouldn't need Store app versions if we can run the same that in the computer.

In fact, I see a lot of Store apps which show that they're avaiable for computer too.
 

Drael646464

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Panos said it himself. Everything points to apps. They are not trying to sell this device to us old hardcore windows phone fans. They are trying to sell this to the masses. Sadly the current form of OS's rely on apps for both iOS and Android. Now if Microsoft could create a conversion process that is so user friendly that you can bring over all these apps to Microsofts mobile ecosystem then it won't work.

There really is a question WHY though? What could a multi-billion dollar per year company want with a niche product in the android market? What's the endpoint?

There has to be some bigger game plan than selling phones and getting a few one drive subscriptions.
 

Drael646464

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Most PC users run traditional x86 and x64 programs, not Store apps. Those do not translate to mobile devices.

That depends. These programs now have access to the full suite of UWP apis. Some scale and operate with touch. There's not a black and white line really between x86 and UWP apps. There are inbetweens.

Fruity loops for example runs pretty well on a tablet, all touch, it scales. Illustrator works well with a pen. I could see both apps attempt to scale more for dual screen devices, and both are still win32.
 

Jamie Brahm

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Most PC users run traditional x86 and x64 programs, not Store apps. Those do not translate to mobile devices.

I'd love to see stats on this. I suspect this is not as true as it used to be, some apps offer serious advantages like the netflix app, over the browser (like offline content), and 2 in 1 markets have been growing. Also younger people are more familiar with the notion of using apps for everything.
 

Razius

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There really is a question WHY though? What could a multi-billion dollar per year company want with a niche product in the android market? What's the endpoint?

There has to be some bigger game plan than selling phones and getting a few one drive subscriptions.

I wish I knew the answer. My only wild guess is to really ease people back into Microsoft making phones. I assume they want to sell it as a complete Enterprise package down the road for businesses since Android has their "Enterprise" grade controls. But I sadly do not have the answer as to why really
 

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