Microsoft leak hints dual-screen Andromeda device targets launch later this year

microsoft
drserg/123rf

This year’s E3 conference is proving to be a veritable treasure trove of Microsoft news and leaks. After the company revealed during its E3 keynote that it was “deep into architecting the next Xbox consoles,” we are hearing reports that Microsoft may be on track with releasing its oft-rumored and highly anticipated dual-screen computing device this year. Although Microsoft initially killed off its Courier concept, the idea was more recently revived under the Andromeda codename.

In a video discussing the company’s hardware road map spotted by OnMSFT, Thurrot.com writer Brad Sams stated that Andromeda is targeted for a launch this year. “Andromeda was mentioned in this content that I was able to view,” Sams said. “It says a release date of 2018, which is this year.”

Microsoft, however, won’t be the only one to embrace the dual-screen computing form factor — its hardware partners may also be planning their own devices, which could be timed around the same time as Microsoft’s big unveiling when that happens. “So we’re looking at a pocketable device, also the documentation says that OEM partners are also going to release similar devices,” Sams added.

This shouldn’t be too surprising given the news coming from chipmakers Intel and Qualcomm. The latter recently unveiled its Snapdragon 850 processor, which is not only geared toward Microsoft’s Windows on ARM platform known as Always Connected PCs, but was designed with innovative form factors in mind. The latter part may hint at the dual-screen computing devices on the horizon. Similarly, rival Intel showed off its Tiger Rapids prototypes with dual-screens. Although Intel has no plans on commercializing Tiger Rapids — the concept comes with one traditional LCD screen and one E Ink display to save power — partners Asus and Lenovo are adding their own spin to bring the idea to market. Asus showed off its Project Precog concept at the show, highlighting Intel’s dual-screen design while adding artificial intelligence capabilities.

Unlike the dual-screen PC prototypes shown at Computex, Microsoft’s Andromeda is said to be a pocketable device, bridging the gap between a smartphone and a laptop, Sams noted. It’s unclear if Microsoft will maintain its 2018 target for Andromeda given the company’s recent leadership changes.

In addition to Andromeda, Microsoft also has some updates to its Surface hardware lineup. A Surface Pro 6 — the current Surface Pro is the company’s fifth iteration — is in the works, as is a new Surface Tablet, Sams said. The Surface Pro 6 is also referred to by its Caramel code name, while the new Surface Tablet is known internally as Libra. The Surface Tablet is said to come in at a lower price point and is likely positioned as a Surface 3 successor aimed at competing against Google’s Chrome OS and Apple’s iPad devices in the education space. These devices are expected to arrive this year. The next-generation HoloLens is expected to arrive in the first quarter 2019 as is the new Surface Hub 2.

We’ve got a laundry list of suggestions for the next Surface. Will Microsoft listen?

Computing

Looking for a new laptop? These 5 notebooks are on sale through Presidents’ Day

If you're ready to ditch your aging notebook, you can score some fantastic Presidents' Day savings right now on Microsoft's Surface Pro 6, Dell's XPS 13, HP's Spectre x360, Lenovo's Yoga C930, and Dell's G5 15 Gaming laptops.
Computing

The Surface Pro 6 is a minimalist update on the best tablet 2-in-1

The Surface Pro 6 is officially here, though it's not as big of a redesign as you might have hoped. With a new coat of black paint and an 8th-gen processor, it's a small, but notable update.
Mobile

New rumors suggest the iPhone 2019 will continue to use Lightning over USB-C

While it's not been long since the last iPhones launched, rumors for the next iPhone are already surfacing. Apple's 2019 flagship could include a variety of upgrades ranging from a new design to enhanced features.
Computing

The next Surface Pro could be a complete redesign. Here's what we know so far

The Surface Pro might have pioneered the 2-in-1 form factor, but the design has stayed the same over the last seven years. Here's what we're looking to see from the Surface Pro 7,
Computing

Switch your WMA files for MP3s with our quick conversion tips

The WMA codec may be great when it comes to multi-channel surround sound, but unfortunately, it falters in terms of compatibility. Check out our guide on how to convert WMA files to MP3 via web-based or desktop methods.
Virtual Reality

Getting into VR is spendy. Which headset is truly worth your hard-earned cash?

Virtual reality has finally gone mainstream, but how do you find the best VR headset for you? Check out a few of our favorites, whether you want the best of the best or a budget alternative for your mobile device.
Computing

Windows is getting a face-lift in 2020, but you can get a sneak peek right now

Microsoft is increasing the lead time for an upcoming major update to Windows 10, giving Windows Insiders the ability to test it right now, even though it's not set for release until 2020.
Computing

These Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts will take your skills to a new level

Windows 10 has many new features, and they come flanked with useful new keyboard shortcuts. Check out some of the new Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts to improve your user experience and save more time!
Computing

What is Wi-Fi 6? Here's a look at the next evolution of the wireless standard

We're exploring the new naming convention for wireless standards, how it affects the devices you buy, and what the upcoming Wi-Fi generation is changing for the better.
Emerging Tech

A.I.-powered website creates freakishly lifelike faces of people who don’t exist

No, this isn't a picture of a missing person. It's a face generated by a new artificial intelligence on the website ThisPersonDoesNotExist.com. Here's how the impressive A.I. works.
Deals

The best Presidents’ Day sales 2019: Amazon, Walmart, Dell, and more

Presidents' Day sales are a great chance to score electronics, clothing, home and office stuff, and other goodies at a discount. We’ve smoked out a large handful of the best of these Presidents' Day deals, from tech to bedding, to help…
Deals

Keep your MacBook safe and dry with an Under Armour backpack for under $50

Under Armour is having a huge sale this weekend to help you on your quest for a better backpack. The UA Outlet Exclusive sale is going on now through Monday, February 18th, offering great discounts on stormproof backpacks.
Deals

Walmart Presidents’ Day sale: Instant Pot, Google Home, and 4K TV deals

Presidents' Day weekend is one of the best times of the year to find deep discounts on 4K TVs, laptops, Instant Pots, clothes, mattresses, and furniture. And Walmart is offering deals on all of those things and more.
Computing

The HoloLens 2 will be announced at MWC. Here's what we know about it so far

The HoloLens 2 is ripe for an announcement. Here's what Microsoft has revealed so far, what's likely in store for the next generation HoloLens, and everything that we know about this mixed reality headset.