The Surface Phone that Microsoft has planned still appears to be going ahead, but it is likely going to be pushed back until early 2017 with their new Windows 10 devices. There might be up to three models of the premium flagship.
No more Lumias
When it comes to mobile, the current Microsoft strategy is one of retrenchment. Microsoft has pulled back development of the Lumia line, which includes product cancellation. This seems to be happening for a number of reasons:
- Windows 10 Mobile is still in development and being improved.
- OEM partners have some breathing room to create new hardware.
- Microsoft has time to come back with a strong product.
The way it currently is, there are no new Lumias stated for release. It looks like the Lumia line is indefinitely being phased out.
Rather, Microsoft seems like it would begin its hardware line all over again in 2017, when it has a more vigorous mobile OS and the proper, innovative hardware. In all likelihood, that also means ditching Lumia for an all-new brand. However, Microsoft’s exact plans here are currently not known.
2017 is the year for new Microsoft devices
If we were to guess, it would seem Microsoft’s plan is to re-enter the phone market with new hardware, simultaneously with the release of Windows 10 Redstone 2.
The release of Windows 10 Redstone 2 has been pushed back to the spring of 2017 to line up all the other new Windows 10 devices that will be launched by the company.
Intel’s next-gen processor family, which is referred to as ‘Kaby Lake,’ will not be available until the latter part of 2016, and Microsoft may be taking their time with this round of devices so that they can be sure to avoid the issues they faced with Skylake family. Of course, what this means is that the Surface Pro 5 and Surface Book 2 won’t be available until early 2017.
Three versions of Surface Phone
It has been reported that Surface Phone may have three models planned:
- Prosumer / Enthusiast
There have been no details provided pertaining to how these categories will be separated, but it is likely they will focus on features and different price points. In addition, there could be variations in internal storage, and processors.
It would seem that Microsoft is vacating the low-end for a general consumer device. The Surface line isn’t about budget-conscious products; instead, it’s about premium ones, so it just makes sense that you would realign the phone category too.
Microsoft deciding against a budget phone market may not be a bad thing at all. There are lots of OEMs to pick up the slack like Alcatel or BLU, who have a much better infrastructure for competing at this price point.
Are you planning to pick a Surface Phone already? Tell us in the comments and check out what we know about iPhone 7 and see how compact phones are making a comeback with iPhone SE.