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Recent patent filing could be a new Surface product

By David Matthews ยท 4 replies
Dec 15, 2017
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  1. The Microsoft Courier, the mythical dual-screen tablet that provoked amazement and wonder…only to let us down by never being released. It was reported back in October that Microsoft was working on a similar concept called “Andromeda” that focused on pen and digital ink functionality. Now it looks a recent patent filing by the Surface team may give us more clues.

    Like the Courier, this device has two screens that fold together. The “self-regulating” hinge design that allows the screen to fold is detailed extensively and uses a series of gear-like cogs to allow for various orientations. For example, there is a “notebook” orientation that allows it to be used as a normal laptop. Another orientation is called the “alarm clock” orientation in which the device stands on its own. This is likely comparable to the “tent” orientation that many 2-in-1 computers like the Lenovo Yoga or Dell XPS 13 have.

    Several use cases are highlighted including extending the display across both surfaces for increased screen real estate. Several devices already attempt this including the recently released ZTE Axon M.

    Another use case involves using one of the screens as a virtual keyboard and trackpad. The Lenovo YogaBook tried this with varying success depending on the reviewer. However, with the right amount of haptic feedback, it may be possible to semi-touch type with it especially since smartphones and tablets have gotten consumers used to typing on a screen.

    While no stylus is present in the filing, it’s probably safe to assume Surface Pen compatibility given Microsoft’s push for pen input on its Surface products. The highly detailed and obsessive notes about the hinge is also not surprising considering the massive amount of engineering just for the Surface Pro, Surface Book, and Surface Studio hinge designs.

    While we probably won’t see an official announcement any time soon, it will be interesting to see how Microsoft will to push their largely unsuccessful mobile efforts.

    Permalink to story.

  2. petert

    petert TS Evangelist Posts: 329   +145

    You don't understand how typing works isn't it? you put your fingers on ASDF and JKL; keys - there are some small bumps on F and J to align your fingers without having to look at the keys - proper distance between keys and most importantly feedback are crucial to achieve decent typing speed. Just because lenovo tried its luck with this concept doesn't mean it is a good thing - at most a niche product, but painful to use.
  3. Squid Surprise

    Squid Surprise TS Evangelist Posts: 2,173   +1,181

    Apparently you haven't watched the current generation(s) type.... While your description is the "proper" way to type, there are all too many people who type in various ways... from the 2-finger approach to the "slam every finger wherever I please" approach...

    With the advent of smartphones and texting/emailing on them, there are millions of people who are quite comfortable typing an "improper" way.
    JaredTheDragon likes this.
  4. ikesmasher

    ikesmasher TS Evangelist Posts: 3,046   +1,381

    yea, They tried to force "home position" typing on me wayyy back in middle school, and to most people younger than 25, its FAR slower than just "slamming every finger wherever we please".

    Anyway, as for the product - how successful this would be is mostly dependent on the finer details - pen holder? good feedback for keyboard? Software bug free? etc
  5. Justadewed

    Justadewed TS Rookie

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