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Photo: Microsoft

After long teasing the Surface Duo, Microsoft is finally offering full details on the dual-screen Android device, available for pre-order today for a hefty $1,399.

Why it matters: Microsoft hesitates to call it a phone, but it's the closest thing to one the company has made in several years. While it looks like other devices in the Surface line, it's the first Microsoft device to run Google's mobile operating system.

Details: Thanks to a 360° hinge, the device can be used in a variety of configurations.

  • The Surface has a single 11-megapixel camera, requiring the owner to fold their screen a certain way to use it as either a front or rear-facing camera.
  • It comes with a host of Microsoft software, including all the Office apps, Skype and OneDrive, as well as all the standard Google Android apps.
  • The device supports most major LTE networks, but doesn't have 5G capabilities. And yes, it can make calls, too.
  • AT&T will sell the device directly, while an unlocked version that works on all three major carriers will be sold by Microsoft, BestBuy.com and other retailers.
  • It will be officially available and shipping starting Sept. 10.

Our thought bubble: With its 360° hinge and dual screens, the Surface Duo is a truly unique device, with some unmatched abilities, including sophisticated multitasking. But at $1,399, it is competing against the priciest smartphones, including Samsung's Galaxy Z Fold and Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.

What they're saying: "I'm not trying to reinvent the phone," Surface head Panos Panay said during a briefing with reporters on Tuesday. "I do believe this is a better way to get things done."

Flashback: Microsoft first previewed the Surface Duo last year, along with a larger Windows-based clamshell device, the Surface Neo. The Neo has reportedly been delayed until next year and Microsoft made no mention of it during Tuesday’s briefing with reporters.

Go deeper

Oct 20, 2020 - Technology

Here's what the U.S. antitrust case charges Google with

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The Justice Department's new antitrust lawsuit against Google centers on the charge that Google has built a self-reinforcing machine to illegally insulate it from any serious competition in search.

Why it matters: DOJ spent more than a year investigating Google to assemble what prosecutors believe is the cleanest case for convincing a court that the company is deliberately hamstringing would-be competition. Both sides now face the likelihood of a bruising, years-long battle that could expand to touch on other aspects of Google's business.

U.S. vs. Google — the siege begins

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Justice Department fired the starter pistol on what's likely to be a years-long legal siege of Big Tech by the U.S. government when it filed a major antitrust suit Tuesday against Google.

The big picture: Once a generation, it seems, federal regulators decide to take on a dominant tech company. Two decades ago, Microsoft was the target; two decades before that, IBM.

Oct 20, 2020 - Technology

Google calls antitrust case "deeply flawed"

Google CEO Sundar Pichai testifies before the House Judiciary Committee last July. Photo: Carolyn Van Houten/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Google says the Justice Department's lawsuit alleging competitive abuses is "deeply flawed" and would fail to help consumers.

Driving the news: The Justice Department and 11 states Tuesday filed an antitrust case against Google, accusing the company of using anticompetitive tactics to illegally monopolize the online search and search advertising markets.