Since Microsoft took to the stage to show off their dual-screen Android-powered Surface-branded phone we’ve been more than a little interested in it. While some specs have been rumoured new leaks have emerged that give us a little more insight into the final device and we’re worried there’s a huge omission.

First of all, what is in there? The Surface Duo will feature a Snapdragon 855 paired with 6GB of RAM, there will be both a 64 GB and 256GB storage option. A 3460mAh battery will push the juice for the twin 5.6 AMOLED displays and will charge by USB-C.

Imaging wise there is am 11MP f/2.0 1.12μm pixel camera that thanks to the Duo’s design may act as both a front and rear sensor. So what’s missing? Wireless charging is an obvious omission, but it’s not quite ubiquitous and with the dual-screen design, we can understand the complexity of including it, so it’s shame but not a show stopper.

The lack of NFC in the current engineering samples that Microsoft employees are testing might just kill this flagship before it launches. In many markets mobile payments are becoming more and more popular, even in the USA contact-less payments are becoming more prevalent — especially now with many stores preferring to not be handling cash.

With the Surface Duo not seemingly including NFC that relegates this to an experiment, not a consumer product. While there are many people who might not use mobile payments, there are enough to split the market that would make the Surface Duo `unlikely to perform well.

As for the rest of the specs the battery seems to be on the small side, especially considering it will be powering two displays. It is possible that there will be a battery of this size on each side of the device which makes a lot more sense.

The chipset powering the entire thing is last year’s SD855 which by the time the phone is released will be well and truly old. They could do with upgrading that for something more modern but we doubt that is a priority for them.

The rear camera as well is also just a single 11MP lens — unless they are going to perform some Google Pixel-like wizardry on the camera then we have some serious reservations about it being good enough in a quad lens camera world.

Of course, time will tell and specs aren’t the be all and end all of a device functioning well so we will wait judgement until we have had hands on with it — something we look forward to. The device has the opportunity to be a game changer, hopefully it has the horsepower and hardware required to do so.

Would you buy a premium-priced Dual Screen Surface Duo without NFC, an old processor, small battery and a single lens camera?

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I used phone and watch for contacless payments, but have now gone back to using my cards. Much easier. I’m looking forward to something new from MS.


Nothing wrong with the 855 chip. 865 is power hungry and is geared towards 5G so NOT needed. Battery life depends on many things. I hope I can use payWave.


MS missing the boat yet again. This is at least a year too late, maybe two.
I can’t even see a niche market amongst business users.
That said, might be fun when the price tumbles shortly after release.


well MS keeps on loving to kick own goals when it comes to phones. Probably coloured by a US-centric view of the world (e.g. if they were in Asia or Australia they would see the massive explosion in contactless payments).


Damn, I was really looking forward to this, but the lack of NFC is a deal-breaker for me.

Tango India Mike

You can pair a Garmin to it (The Duo is an android phone after all) and just pay with your watch….I do this now….actually even easier than a phone


The lack of NFC is such a deal breaker for me. We live in a cashless world now with coronavirus and all. Will probs skip this generation if the leak is true.

Tim Chef

Microsoft has become as unimaginative as Google. Go to the Apple side of the force, Life is way better here. Stay on the dark side if you want, but Emperor Android Palpatine gives me the shivers.


Apple is as boring as bat 💩