When Microsoft’s Surface Duo shipped last year, it represented Microsoft’s return to the smartphone space, although it’s an Android phone this time. Unfortunately, the device was problematic. It had year-old hardware and the camera simply couldn’t live up to the $1,399 price tag. At the very least, it looks like the camera is going to be improved with the Surface Duo 2.
New images have leaked of the Surface Duo 2 from a YouTube channel called Tech Rat, and more importantly, Windows Central’s Zac Bowden confirmed the legitimacy of the leak. The images show a triple-lens camera on the back of the device, along with a big camera bump.
This is a significant difference from the camera that was in the original model. The Surface Duo had an 11MP f/2.0 camera in the top bezel above one of the screens. It basically had the quality of a mediocre front-facing camera. The sensor was too small, and the depth of the sensor was limited by the laws of physics, since the device itself was only 4.8mm thick.
Naturally, the solution is to add thickness via a camera bump. Even if there was a single sensor, this would improve the quality greatly. But on top of that, there are two more; if Microsoft is following market trends, it’s safe to assume that those two are an ultra-wide and a telephoto lens. Sadly, the leak doesn’t tell us anything about the cameras other than that they exist.
Presumably, Microsoft has a plan for when that camera bump hits the other side of the glass-backed Surface Duo 2 (assuming it’s still made of glass). The dual-screen smartphone has a 360-degree hinge, and it’s meant to be able to fold back on itself. That massive camera bump is going to hit the back of the other panel.
While we don’t know anything else about the cameras, there were a few other tidbits in the YouTube video. There’s a new black color, something that was rumored pretty much throughout the life of the original Surface Duo but never materialized.
Note that there are no images here of the screen. Tech Rat claims that the screens will be slightly bigger, have rounded corners, and the device will have narrower bezels. In fact, it specifically says that you won’t notice any changes unless you have the Surface Duo 2 side-by-side with the original model. Another thing expected to be added is NFC, a key omission from the Surface Duo, and apparently, it’s coming in September or October.
Obviously, the Surface Duo 2 will have a more modern chipset. It’s unclear if Microsoft will use the current-generation Snapdragon 888, or if it wants to continue to stay a generation behind with the Snapdragon 865. Another option would be to use the Snapdragon 870, which is a slightly modified version of the Snapdragon 865. All of these chips should force the device to come with 5G.