Daily Authority: New Surface devices incoming

👋 Good morning, Nick here covering for Tristan. His out of office email mentioned something about Coffee Addicts Anonymous, but I’m not sure I’m supposed to mention that.

New Surface devices coming September 22

surface event teaser

Earlier this week we got an official launch date for Windows 11, but Microsoft has something else in store that’s happening even sooner. 

An all-digital event will be held on September 22 at 11am ET (save the date here), and although the company hasn’t explicitly stated what it’s for, it isn’t too hard to guess.

  • The media invite says they’ll talk about “devices and Windows 11,” and since it’s Microsoft, that means new Surface devices.
  • The invite image (seen above) shows a new Surface Pro, which follows the business-oriented Surface Pro 7 released earlier this year.
  • The company is also tipped to release a new product in the Surface Book lineup, but this time with a key difference.
  • If patents prove to be correct, it will ditch the detachable screen design for a new folding mechanism, and it might even drop the Surface Book branding.

But what we’re really looking forward to is the Surface Duo 2.

  • Last year’s Surface Duo smartphone was certainly ambitious, but deeply flawed.
  • Microsoft’s vision of a dual-screen folding device was a unique take on the future of mobile devices, but on release the software was buggy and borderline unusable.
  • Essentially, it was a prototype masquerading as a consumer product priced at nearly $1,400.
  • While we haven’t heard anything about the new device fixing these shortcomings, a leaked image a few months ago does at least show an enhanced external camera module.
  • The original Surface Duo didn’t feature any external camera at all. The idea was to open the screen and use the internal selfie camera, but the results were middling at best.
  • That said, the real question is whether or not Microsoft can fix the software and find compelling use cases for the dual-screen design.
  • Specs and pricing to compete with real consumer folding devices like the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Z Flip 3 wouldn’t hurt, either.

Roundup

📷Samsung announced the industry’s first 200MP camera sensor, with new pixel-binning tech and improved low-light performance (Android Authority).

📱 The Samsung Galaxy S21 FE release date is rumored to be pushed back to October (Android Authority).

🙊Saying ‘OK Google’ could become optional in some cases and it’s a bit concerning for privacy (Android Authority).

🏭Google reportedly optimistic about Pixel 6 sales, increases production by 50% (Ars Technica).

🎧Qualcomm’s new aptX Lossless Bluetooth codec will boast CD-quality audio and is expected some time in 2022 (Android Authority).

🎮 New rumors suggest that Game Boy and GB Color games could come to Nintendo Switch Online this month (Android Authority).

👮‍♀️ Quick reminder that Larry Ellison’s Oracle started as a CIA project, and the company has played a big role in building today’s surveillance state (Gizmodo).

🛰 Russia warns that the International Space Station is facing irreparable failures after more than 20 years in the sky (BBC).

🍎 Apple offered a small concession in its App Store rules for external payments, but still faces lawsuits in several countries around the world (Reuters).

📲 Speaking of Apple, the company announced that Arizona and Georgia will be first to add state IDs to iPhones (The Verge).

🏎 Barring more trouble with supply chains, Elon Musk says the Tesla Roadster ‘should ship’ in 2023 (The Verge).

🐭 Some dreams should stay dreams: “What would a terrifying fact be if Pokémon were real?” (/r/askreddit)

Throwback Thursday

Chrome logo on smartphone next to globe

Today is the anniversary of Google Chrome’s first public release on September 2, 2008. Granted, it was still in beta and limited to just Windows devices. A stable release for Windows, OS X, and Linux wouldn’t be available until May 2010.

Despite Google’s backing, Chrome barely managed to scratch 1% market share until well into 2009. Today more than 60% of the world uses Chrome, with the only notable competition coming from Apple’s Safari.

And who headed development of this new web browser? A relatively new hire by the name of Sundar Pichai.

Tristan is back at the helm tomorrow with the latest tech news.

Nick Fernandez, Editor

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