Online sales sites are definitely a gold mine for smartphone fans. After the Pixel 6a and Pixel 7 Pro sold on Facebook before their official releases, here is a Microsoft smartphone prototype on eBay.
A Surface Duo 2 “Lite”
A product sheet, now offline, revealed a strange mobile with a hinge and stamped with the Microsoft logo. Spotted by Windows Central, this device was in fact a prototype of a Surface Duo 2 in “Lite” version. The Redmond firm would indeed have considered launching a cheaper version of its dual-screen smartphone released last year.
The phone, dubbed Cronos internally, should have come to expand the Surface Duo range at the end of 2022. However, for some unknown reason, Microsoft would have abandoned the project. Not before, however, that a prototype of the device is found on eBay decked out with a qualifier “Dev Unit” which leaves no doubt about its experimental aspect.
A project canceled for lack of interest
According to Windows Central, the phone would have onboard a mid-range Qualcomm chip, two photo modules and an all-plastic shell to reduce the bill for the device. A technical sheet less attractive than that of the Surface Duo 2 and its three photo modules, its curved screens, its glass shell and its Snapdragon 888 chip.
The phone will therefore never see the light of day, Microsoft having canceled the project at the end of 2021, undoubtedly due to the rather icy reception which was reserved for the “standard” version of the Surface Duo. This smartphone with an interesting concept remains behind technically, with failed ergonomics, an insufficiently neat photo part and average autonomy. Marketing a mid-range version of a product that still has such youthful flaws would have been a daring move.
According to Windows Central, the mobile branch of Microsoft is quite busy anyway with the upcoming release of Android 12 L on its Surface Duo 2 precisely.