Microsoft teases new foldable phone and unveils AirPods rival

Several years after Microsoft began retreating from the smartphone market, the company now appears to be trying to break back in.Microsoft teased a ne...

Posted: Oct 2, 2019 4:51 PM
Updated: Oct 2, 2019 5:15 PM

Several years after Microsoft began retreating from the smartphone market, the company now appears to be trying to break back in.

Microsoft teased a new phone at its annual Surface press event on Wednesday. The new device, called the Surface Duo, is foldable with two 5.6-inch displays side by side and works with Android.

'You're going to talk about it as a phone, and I get that,' Panos Panay, Microsoft's chief product officer, said at the event. 'And you're going to talk about it as a communication device, and it does both those things incredibly well for sure.' But, he added, 'make no mistake, this product is a Surface.'

In an unusual move, however, Microsoft teased the product well before it's expected to hit the market. The Surface Duo will launch in the 2020 holiday season, more than a year from now, according to the company.

Over the years, Microsoft has suffered a number of high-profile hardware missteps, including a massive $7.6 billion writedown of its acquisition of Nokia's handset business.

Conversely, it's thrived recently in large part by focusing not on consumers, but enterprise customers. Under CEO Satya Nadella, the company has made a successful years-long bet on cloud computing, positioning it as one of the two dominant players in this fast-growing market along with Amazon.

But Wednesday's press event highlighted that Microsoft isn't giving up on hardware either, both for consumers -- with multiple new products including the phone -- and business customers.

In addition to the Duo, Microsoft teased a new dual-screen device called the Surface Neo that also won't be available until next holiday season. The device combines two 9-inch screens and folds inward. You can flip it, reverse it and surf Netflix. It's also possible to expand a single app across the two screens or use two apps at the same time.

'Neo is not only the next new Surface, it's the next category,' Panay said.

The product may remind longtime Microsoft watchers of the Courier, a two-screen tablet concept that pre-dated the iPad. Former CEO Steve Ballmer famously killed that device.

Microsoft also took direct aim at Apple with the launch of its new Surface Earbuds, wireless earbuds that are clearly intended as a rival offering to Apple's AirPods. Earbuds will work with some Microsoft Office products, such as allowing you to access your Outlook calendar and email, and boast a full day of battery life, according to the company.

The product will be available later this year for $249, compared to the $199 Apple charges for AirPods with a wireless charging case.

Beyond these products, Microsoft refreshed its hardware lineup with the introduction of the Surface Pro 7, an updated tablet with USB-C and deeper integration with Microsoft Office, and the Surface Pro X, a laptop and tablet hybrid with a new processor, 4K video and an edge-to-edge display.

Microsoft said the Surface Pro X is the first Windows PC to have an integrated AI engine, which will correct a video call and bring the eye gaze up so if you're talking to someone on a call, they appear to be making eye contact.

The tablets start at $749 and $999, respectively.

Microsoft is also expanding its hardware lineup with the Surface Laptop 3, a new laptop that instantly turns on when you open it and comes in an aluminum finish that's the color of 'sandstone.'

Panay said the new laptop is 'three times more powerful' than Apple's MacBook Air. A 13-inch model will start at $999 and a 15-inch model will start at $1,199. Both will be available starting October 22.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 947918

Reported Deaths: 15377
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1291181990
Lake635721103
Allen53899761
Hamilton44082449
St. Joseph42122590
Elkhart33803491
Vanderburgh30574449
Tippecanoe26915251
Johnson23727418
Hendricks22410342
Porter21832347
Clark17562231
Madison17492385
Vigo16302285
Monroe14545191
LaPorte14389239
Delaware14183222
Howard13971273
Kosciusko11498135
Hancock10935166
Warrick10737178
Bartholomew10635170
Floyd10514208
Wayne10077226
Grant9213204
Morgan8928160
Boone8463111
Dubois7791123
Dearborn769490
Henry7691133
Noble7466101
Marshall7409128
Cass7219118
Lawrence7026153
Shelby6647111
Jackson661386
Gibson6190107
Harrison609386
Huntington604495
Montgomery5853105
DeKalb581091
Knox5535104
Miami548888
Putnam543268
Clinton537465
Whitley529354
Steuben501768
Wabash488692
Jasper483861
Jefferson474492
Ripley457777
Adams446068
Daviess4231108
Scott409165
Clay394957
White393858
Greene393392
Wells389884
Decatur388797
Fayette378578
Posey362341
Jennings356056
Washington334747
LaGrange325175
Spencer321136
Fountain318455
Randolph317190
Sullivan309449
Owen287064
Starke282864
Fulton280454
Orange277859
Jay257038
Perry254152
Carroll245229
Franklin242838
Rush237030
Vermillion235050
Parke221420
Tipton212055
Pike211740
Blackford170534
Pulaski168551
Crawford147318
Newton145845
Benton143916
Brown135846
Martin130217
Switzerland126910
Warren115616
Union98511
Ohio80511
Unassigned0482

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1390015

Reported Deaths: 21820
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1541781574
Cuyahoga1361632341
Hamilton989691326
Montgomery681371161
Summit569981051
Lucas51769869
Butler48139663
Stark42350983
Lorain32165539
Warren30497338
Mahoning27564643
Clermont26081297
Lake24873422
Delaware22600147
Licking20818246
Fairfield20789223
Greene20667275
Trumbull20378516
Medina20178290
Clark18235332
Richland16749236
Portage16442231
Wood15973209
Allen14405261
Miami14063261
Muskingum12976155
Wayne12234244
Columbiana12046242
Tuscarawas11248271
Marion10935150
Pickaway10642129
Scioto10585127
Erie9888171
Ross9648177
Lawrence8967125
Hancock8637143
Ashtabula8509187
Geauga8272156
Belmont8262188
Jefferson7736175
Huron7566131
Union743951
Washington7396126
Athens712065
Sandusky6984135
Darke6884137
Knox6839122
Seneca6533137
Ashland6078115
Auglaize596888
Shelby5845104
Brown578272
Mercer565890
Crawford5591117
Defiance5579101
Madison552171
Highland550982
Fulton543583
Clinton535781
Logan520587
Preble5123111
Putnam4909107
Guernsey487664
Williams469982
Perry464454
Champaign454964
Ottawa443584
Jackson436663
Pike400745
Morrow398251
Coshocton393669
Fayette385053
Adams371575
Hardin367570
Gallia356658
Holmes3326111
Henry331869
Van Wert321471
Hocking312370
Wyandot286058
Carroll267052
Paulding247443
Meigs223042
Monroe193149
Noble174442
Morgan170329
Harrison161741
Vinton141919
Unassigned05
Fort Wayne
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 61°
Angola
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 61°
Huntington
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 61°
Decatur
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 61°
Van Wert
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 61°
Monday is another nice and breezy day with warmer temperatures.
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events