New patents indicate Microsoft’s Surface ‘Andromeda’ project could enable users to ink on the outside of the device.
Andromeda, which has long been a spectre formed from rumour and patent filings, is supposed to be a pocket-sized, folding Surface device tailored for note-taking.
This patent points explicitly to some form of external sensor that would enable users to write on the outer surface. Furthermore, writings and sketches on the external surface would be transferred digitally to the device.
The idea seems akin to Samsung’s Note series and its ability to take notes on the Ambient Display. However, unlike the Note phones, the Andromeda folds over. Instead of writing on a screen, users would write on the outside of the device.
The patent describes a type of cover with a user interface that can receive inputs from a stylus. Additionally, the patent notes that users can interact with it even when closed.
Overall, I think it’s a unique idea from Microsoft — one that could prove a winner. The potential applications for this kind of feature are virtually limitless, and it would make a great productivity tool.
However, the Andromeda project is still in flux. We may never see it in stores. Hopefully, Microsoft does find a way to make it work.
However, if you’re in need of a new computer, you may be better off going for one of Microsoft’s recently announced Surface devices.