Microsoft isn’t the only company interested in foldable mobile devices, as we recently learned that both Huawei and Samsung could launch a foldable smartphone in the coming months. However, the Redmond giant is reportedly no longer the only manufacturer exploring a Windows 10-based foldable device, as a new report from WinFuture.de revealed today that Dell could also release its own alternative to Microsoft’s rumored Andromeda device (via The Verge).
According to the report, Dell’s dual-screen device is codenamed “Januss” (a reference to the two-faced Roman god) and could be powered by a new processor from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 850 processor. The report says that Windows 10-powered device could have been in development since last summer, though details about its design and features are still unknown.
Microsoft’s own Andromeda device has already been seen in many patents, and CEO Satya Nadella has said multiple times in the past that the company is working on a revolutionary mobile device. However, it remains to be seen if Microsoft will apply the same strategy it used for the original Surface line for this new device category: that is, creating a reference device to inspire other OEMs to follow and do even better. That strategy definitely worked for the Surface Pro with Windows 8, but PC OEMs quickly abandoned the crippled Windows RT, as did Microsoft after the Surface 2.
It's clear that there is still an audience for new mobile devices powered by Microsoft software, but creating a new device category is difficult, as we've seen with wearables recently. Whether Microsoft and its partners can make foldable mobile devices a hit remains to be seen, but it will likely depend on if these devices can truly replace your smartphone. Again, Samsung, Huawei and other phone manufacturers could well beat Microsoft to market with a foldable Android smartphone, and OS that is already incredibly popular worldwide.