Microsoft is working on a number of new Surface products that could debut later this year. The Redmond-based tech giant recently celebrated the fifth anniversary of its Surface Pro range, and now details of next set of devices have emerged online.
According to Brad Sams writing for Thurrott.com, Microsoft is working on at least three new Surface devices. The three devices are codenamed ‘Carmel’, ‘Libra’ and ‘Andromeda’, and show Microsoft’s plan for the brand. Microsoft first launched the Surface-branded device in 2012 as an attempt to take on Apple iPad. While the Surface did not take off as expected at the start, it has now become a staple for Microsoft with over $1 billion in revenue.
The new details show Microsoft is set to further revamp the Surface lineup. The first device in the new leaked roadmap is Carmel, which is believed to be the codename for Surface Pro 6. Since Microsoft launched Surface Pro LTE very recently, the Carmel is not expected to launch this year. The product could debut sometime early next year as the successor to Surface Pro and Surface Pro LTE models.
The next device is said to the low-cost Surface, which Bloomberg reported about early this year. The report stated that the device is slated to arrive in 2018, and the leaked documentation reveals that this product is codenamed Libra. The report added that Microsoft is targeting $400 price tag for this low-cost Surface and it is said to feature a 10-inch screen and USB Type-C connector. It is expected to be lighter than the Surface Pro and will compete with the new iPad aimed at education segment.
The documentation states that the third device is codenamed Andromeda, which is the much rumored to the pocketable device with foldable display. The leaks so far indicate that Andromeda is the natural evolution of Microsoft’s scrapped Project Courier. The interesting detail is that Andromeda is said to arrive this year.
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Brad Sams notes that Microsoft is planning to use Andromeda as a pilot while its OEM partners build an ecosystem of devices around such an experience. Microsoft is hoping that Andromeda will lead to a new product category altogether, which is a strategy similar to other Surface devices. Intel showed off its dual-screen prototype called Tiger Rapids at Computex 2018 early this month, and Andromeda could be the stepping stone for that project.
The leaked documentation also reveals that all these products were created under the leadership of Terry Myerson, who has now left the company. It is possible that Microsoft’s new leadership team will change or modify these product plans but the low-cost Surface codenamed Libra is almost likely to debut this year.