Microsoft’s Surface Duo looks like it’s ready to launch

Microsoft has spent the past few weeks teasing the Surface Duo on Twitter, and it now looks like the dual-screen device is ready to launch. Microsoft’s new Android-powered device first appeared at the FCC earlier this week, and today it has shown up on the Bluetooth SIG certification page. Devices typically appear in FCC and Bluetooth listings just a few weeks away from launch.

Recent rumors had suggested the Surface Duo might appear in July, but it’s clear the device isn’t ready to launch this month. Instead, it looks increasingly likely that Microsoft will launch the Surface Duo in the coming weeks.

Sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans tell The Verge that the company had originally planned to focus on the Surface Duo and dual-screen devices at Build earlier this year. These plans changed once it was clear Build would be held virtually due to the pandemic, and Microsoft also pushed back its Windows 10X dual-screen plans to far beyond 2020.

Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

While some developers already have access to dual-screen developer units, Microsoft had planned at one point to get Surface Duo to developers a lot sooner. Like many things, the pandemic has impacted Surface Duo launch plans, but we understand Microsoft is still hoping to ship the device by the end of September.

Adding fuel to the Surface Duo launch rumors, phone leaker Evan Blass has also hinted that the Surface Duo will appear on AT&T’s network in the US. Blass typically obtains marketing images and materials of unreleased phones a few weeks or months before they’re about to launch, which also suggests that the Surface Duo is nearly ready to go.

Microsoft has also spent the summer teasing the Surface Duo on Twitter ahead of its launch. Microsoft’s communications chief, Frank Shaw, posted a photo of the Surface Duo earlier this month, just days after Surface chief Panos Panay teased the device on Twitter with what appeared to be a new bumper case. This same case also appeared in a video on LinkedIn featuring Microsoft executive Brad Anderson last week.

Microsoft first unveiled the Surface Duo at a press event in New York City back in October, promising a holiday 2020 launch for the device. While the company has not shared official hardware specifications just yet, leaks have suggested it will include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, 6GB of RAM, up to 256GB of storage, and include two 5.6-inch displays.

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