Windows 11 on a Duo? No. It's not going to happen without these features...


Oct 8, 2013
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I think it's fair to say that a large number of enthusiasts would like to see Windows 11 on the Duo. And, why not?

Windows 11 looks like a mobile operating system, with its centralised taskbar and clean, easy-to-navigate start menu.

It's a lot more touch friendly and easier to use on a small screen than Windows 10.

A lot of basic functionality, such as opening/closing apps, interacting with file explorer, support for widgets, and a much-improved windows store are all improvements that would make Windows 11 a solid mobile operating system.

Finally, Windows 11 will support Android apps. That's a biggy. It legitimises Windows 11 as a mobile operating system.

Everything about Windows 11 screams "put me on a mobile device!!"

But I don't see it happening.

Here are 2 reasons why Windows 11 won't be showing up on the Duo anytime soon.

Problem 1...Maps

The Amazon app store (which is the store you'll have to download from the Windows store to access all of those Android apps) does not have Google Maps, which means you'll have to rely on Bing Maps.

Bing Maps is nowhere near as good as Google Maps.

Bing Maps has far fewer local businesses listed, it doesn't support its own business rating/review programme, it has far less street view support and the map quality is not on par with Google.

Mapping solutions is one of the huge benefits of owning a smartphone. As of 2020, Google Maps get about 260 billion search and direction queries every year. That's a lot of people who have come to rely on mobile mapping.

Bing is a poor substitute if you're coming from Google Maps, and you'll notice the gaps very quickly.

Problem 2...Payment

Google has Google Pay. Apple has Apple Pay. Samsung has Samsung Pay

And Microsoft has...nothing

And there's no Google Pay app in the Amazon app store.

So, no tap to pay on Windows 11.

That's a problem. A big problem. Almost everyone with a smartphone uses tap-to-pay.

They used to have a wallet app back in the Windows Mobile days, but it was a pointless. You could store a small handful of business loyalty cards, and that was it. It never supported tap-to-pay.

Setting up a mobile tap-to-pay service is no small challenge. It's taken Apple, Google and Samsung years to develop partnerships with banks and partner shops, and to convince the world's central banks that it's a safe and secure payment method.

I'd love to see W11 on the Duo. To me, a Surface is not a Surface without Windows, and I wouldn't be surprised to learn that a lot of people inside Microsoft feel the same way.

But, when Microsoft walked away from Windows Mobile, they were doing a lot more than just killing off a line of hardware.

In a 2016 interview, Terry Myerson, Head of Windows, said this about why Microsoft was committed to mobile: "When you stop investing in these things, it's super hard, super, super hard to restart."

Well, about 5 minutes later they did stop. And it's going to be super, super hard to catch up.

Sorry, long post.
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