WSJ: Microsoft really testing a Surface phone

Daniel Bader

November 2, 2012 1:20 pm


Microsoft’s ability to keep secrets was proven earlier this year when the Surface launched, and no one know it was coming. Unlike recent Apple products, for which there is a cottage industry of leaked parts prior to announcements, Microsoft successfully kept its first consumer tablet a secret until launch day.

Not so with its purported first phone. While we’ve heard rumblings of the sort in recent weeks, the Wall Street Journal is claiming that Microsoft is indeed testing its own Windows Phone 8 device, but it may not actually see the light of day. The company is waiting to gauge the reception of its partners’ products — Nokia’s Lumia 820 and 920, HTC’s 8X and 8S, and Samsung’s ATIV S — before committing to bringing the phone to market. Unlike Android vendors, Microsoft keeps its phone hardware partners on a short leash, so few of the software elements can be changed. And even Nokia thinks it would be a good idea for Microsoft to release its own phone.

Apparently this Surface phone is being tested by Asian vendors, and has a screen resolution of between four and five inches — not exactly helpful, but encouraging information. Initially, Microsoft had planned to releases its own phone in time for the holiday season, but its intentions could have changed in the past few weeks. It’s possible that the company is waiting for sales numbers of its Surface tablet in order to see whether consumers are willing to buy into Microsoft as a device company.

Source: WSJ
Via: The Verge 

  • eshizzi

    Natural progression!

    • 1234APPLE

      5″ AND OVER PLEASE

    • dstruct2k

      That’s what she said.

  • RTandy

    I am still sticking with a Nokia. Build quality, design, reception, battery life – those are the things that matter to me, and something that Nokia brings to the table better than any other company.

  • ns.dev

    Just out of curiosity, who makes the Surface? (ie: Foxconn for iDevices)

    • Henry

      Foxconn actually makes more than Apple products. They make other company’s products as well such as Sony, Toshiba, NEC, Dell etc… It is possible that the Surface is made by them as well

  • JP

    I wonder if I should hold off on that Lumina 920 purchase.

  • John Lee

    I currently have an HTC Surround and wouldn’t mind upgrading to a Surface phone if it has the right features at the right price, and unlocked from the start.

  • CMC

    Um, buy an iPhone, dimwads.

    • ns.dev

      All the dimwads already did.

    • OMG BASEDGOD TYBG #taskforce

      OMG TROLL AT WORK.

  • Me

    @Mobilesyrup: Maybe you want to learn the difference between “screen resolution” and “screen size”. Just saying :)

  • me

    I don’t think this really matters. The purpose of the Surface was to ensure that there was a high quality tablet in the marketplace, something which PC makers are notoriously bad at.

    I don’t think phones suffer from this problem (as much, anyway).

    Since WP8 will get updated directly by Microsoft (unlike Android, which is why Nexus phones are so popular) and will have little bloat to begin with, a Surface phone won’t be as critical.

  • Weezy

    I tried a Surface tablet at Oakridge mall yesterday.

    How do you close an app besides Alt + F4? The booth guy didn’t know and I didn’t want to wait for another just to find out — the stupid things weren’t even connected to the internet so I had no chance to check some browser benchmarks. Nothing too interesting to look at besides calendar/mail/photos which had pre-loaded example data. Showing animated touch circles or swipe marks is a nice touch.

    Speed was good, but 15 GB just for the OS is something that blew me away. I think I’d rather go for something like a Lenovo Yogapad

    • ns.dev

      I think you have to swipe a certain direction, not sure however as I’ve only used W8 on traditional PCs.

    • Henry

      You close application by either pressing the capacitive Microsoft logo on the tablet or swipe down from the top edge

    • dstruct2k

      Although just pressing the logo key only minimizes the app. The only way to truly close it would be the “grab the top and toss down” action.

  • MapleHamwich

    Well, apparently they won’t have to wait long to see if consumers are into MS as a hardware vendor. Xbox 360 is massive and the Surface tablets are sold out.

  • Weezy

    Thanks Henry, the staff working there when I came by were either very helpful and helping very slow/old people or they were only interested in avoiding anyone but their friendsd

    I did try swiping down but I made the apps split-screen , and swiping from the bottom just brought up app settings. Maybe there is a trick to it (I also could bring up the charm bar on the right but on the left I could only bring a shortcut to the Home screen and not see the open apps by tapping the corner/edge on the left)

    • Swizzlerz

      try using the mouse to figure it out first click near top of screen middle and then drag down to middle of screen. if you move to right or left side you will see split bars come up. stay in middle that should close it. btw. rt apps auto close as you dont use them if you open task manager you could manually close them but its near pointless. as the auto close as like a dead suspended state somehow. :S remember reading something about it at one point

    • dstruct2k

      @Swizzlerz
      Sounds a lot like automatic memory management that kills the oldest task when the system runs out of memory; The same kind of system is used in iOS and Android (and probably Windows Phone too)

    • WP789

      To close an app, put your finger on the top of the screen where the black border is, then without taking your fingers off the screen, swipe or drag down ward until you reach the bottom of the screen then let go.