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Microsoft Surface Duo 2 packs Snapdragon 888 and two larger displays for $1499
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Microsoft Surface Duo 2 packs Snapdragon 888 and two larger displays for $1499

by Vyncent ChanSeptember 23, 2021
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As the industry is gradually embracing foldable displays as the way forward, Microsoft seems to be believe that their approach is better, taking a second go with the Surface Duo 2. While it is technically a foldable device, it uses two flat displays with a hinge in between, just like its predecessor. I guess Microsoft really believes in the “two is better than one” saying.

Microsoft Surface Duo 2 Surface Pen

Instead of the 5.6″ PixelSense AMOLED displays in the original Surface Duo, Microsoft has upped the game, with two 5.8″ PixelSense displays that combine for an approximation of an 8.3″ display. The displays are also capable of a 90Hz refresh rate, with support for adaptive refresh rate, which is a pretty nice upgrade for a more fluid user experience. For those who are pining to write on a large hard glass surface, you will also be glad to know that the Surface Duo 2 supports all current-gen Surface pens, including the Surface Slim Pen, Surface Pen and Surface Hub 2 Pen, with a magnetic attachment to hold the Surface Slim Pen to its body.

As you would expect, the Surface Duo 2 comes with the whole complement of Microsoft apps from their Office suite and more. There’s also other Google pre-installed apps, as well as the Play Store, which Microsoft is oddly proud enough to mention in their marketing.

Microsoft Surface Duo 2 gaming

Powering that experience is the Snapdragon 888, which is paired with 8GB of LPDDR5 memory. This is a pretty huge upgrade, considering that the original Surface Duo launched with the Snapdragon 855 in 2020. Storage options can be configured all the way from 128GB to 512GB, giving you plenty of space to make use of… the space that the dual-display configuration provides. Microsoft also upgraded the battery significantly, now offering a 4449mAh dual-battery that charges at up to 23W.

Microsoft Surface Duo 2 camera

Another area that sees a massive improvement is the imaging on the Surface Duo 2. You now get a total of four cameras, with a main 12MP f/1.7 shooter with OIS, 12MP f/2.4 2X telephoto camera with OIS, and an ultra-wide 16MP f/2.2 camera. There’s also a 12MP f/2.0 front-facing camera for your video calling needs. This is a stark upgrade from last year’s Surface Duo that only packed a single 11MP f/2.0 camera.

Microsoft Surface Duo 2 notification bar

As a whole, it seems that Microsoft has also refined the overall design, with them even taking advantage of the unavoidable gap between its displays as a bonus, by turning it into a nifty notification bar. You can also get the Surface Duo 2 in two colors, which is perfect for those who wanted the Surface Duo in any color other than Glacier. It is still obscenely heavy though, and is actually heavier than its predecessor by a good 34g. The Surface Duo 2 weighs 284g, which puts it in competition against tablets, rather than your average smartphone.

Microsoft Surface Duo 2 Specs and Pricing

CPU Snapdragon 8885nm FinFET
1 x Kryo 680 Prime (Cortex-X1) @ 2.84 GHz + 3 x Kryo 680 Gold (Cortex-A78) @ 2.42 GHz + 4 x Kryo 680 Silver (Cortex-A55) @ 1.80 GHz
GPU Adreno 660
Memory 6GB LPDDR4X
Storage 128GB/256GB/512GB
Display 2 x 5.8″ 1344 x 1892 (13:9) 90Hz PixelSense AMOLED display
401PPI, 100% sRGB, DCI-P3, 800 nits max brightness
Gorilla Glass Victus
Audio Stereo speakers
Dual mic AI-based noise suppression/acoustic echo cancellation
Camera Main camera: 12MP f/1.7 1.4µm, dual pixel PDAF, OIS, 27mm eqv. focal length
2X Telephoto: 12MP f/2.4, 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 51mm eqv. focal length
Ultra-wide: 16MP f/2.2, 1.0µm, 13mm eqv. focal length (110° FoV)
4K60 video recording, 240FPS slow-mo
Selfie camera 12MP f/2.0, 1.0µm, 24mm eqv. focal length
Connectivity eSIM + nano SIM
5G-NR NSA mmWave up to 6Gbps down, Sub-6 up to 3.2Gbps down
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax, WiFi 6
Bluetooth 5.1
NFC
GPS
USB 3.2 Gen2
Software Android 11
Battery 4449mAh
23W fast charging
Dimensions Open: 145.2 x 184.5 x 5.5 mm
Closed: 145.2 x 92.1 x 11.0 mm
Weight 284g
Price 128GB: $1499 (~RM6285)
256GB: $1599 (~RM6704)
512GB: $1799 (~RM7542)

Obviously the Surface Duo 2 is not the most affordable device on the market, but if you are using a lot of Microsoft apps in your workday, you might be quite interested in it. Microsoft has been working extensively to optimize their apps to run better on the dual-display form factor of the Surface Duo, so we can only expect more to come from them.

The Surface Duo 2 is launching this 5th October along with Windows 11, although we aren’t sure whether we will see it being made available in Malaysia officially.

Pokdepinion: A foldable without the fragility involved with flexible, foldable displays definitely sounds pretty enticing… Especially if used with a pen.

About The Author
Vyncent Chan
Technology enthusiast, casual gamer, pharmacy graduate. Strongly opposes proprietary standards and always on the look out for incredible bang-for-buck.