Microsoft hasn’t impressed us in a while with a revolutionary Surface device. One would say ever since the Surface Duo was launched, but that one was a bit of a flop. Today brings us the possibility of a tri fold Surface Phone, courtesy of a new Microsoft patent.
It reveals an early look into a “multi panel device”, with a tri fold design. The patent has been granted by the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) last week and reveals a sketch of a device with two hinges, that’s able to open up and reveal a large screen made up of 3 separate portions. When folded up, the device looks and gets used like a traditional smartphone, while also reminding us of the Surface Duo.
We don’t have specs detailed here or any info about the new hinge. We’ve seen Samsung recently patenting a tri fold device, after TCL toyed with the idea in a few prototypes. We’ve been stuck around the 8 inch mark for foldables ever since they came out. Nobody has dared to debut a tablet that becomes a phone, I mean a larger diagonal device, not just an iPad Mini replacement.
The problem is that two hinges may also mean two breaking points and that could become a problem. Also, the resulting phone, all bundled up together would be impossibly thick. If this gets made, expect a gigantic price, closer to $3000. I should also mention that the hinges from here appear to be unidirectional and not bidirectional like those used by the current Surface Duo and Surface Duo 2. Since there’s no need to reverse fold, there should be no gap between screens.