What’s the difference between the Microsoft Surface Duo 2 and the Surface Duo?

by -
image : microsoft

techno.rentetan.com – Microsoft has unveiled the second-generation Surface Duo, an upgrade to the tablet that was first shown in 2019.

The Surface Duo’s journey has been fascinating. Microsoft has always been careful not to refer to it as a phone, eschewing the Surface Phone moniker that was popular previous to its release.

Despite being announced in late 2019, it will not be available in the United States until September 2020, and in other regions until February 2021.

So, what has Microsoft altered to make the Surface Duo 2 more appealing to customers?

Cost and availability

  • Duo 2: $1,499.99 / £1,349
  • Duo: $1,399.99 / £1,349

The original Surface Duo was announced in October 2019, with pre-orders beginning in August 2020 and delivery in September 2020 in the United States; it was confirmed for additional countries in December 2020, and it went on sale in February 2021.

The Surface Duo 2 was unveiled on September 22, 2021, and it will be available starting October 20, 2021, with pre-orders already open.

The Surface Duo, on the other hand, has seen a considerable price drop, and it now costs almost half the price of the Surface Duo 2.

Build and Design

  • Duo 2: 145.2 x 184.5 x 5.5mm (open); 145.2 x 92.1 x 11mm (closed); 284g
  • Duo: 145.2 x 186.9 x 4.8mm (open); 145.2 x 93.3 x 9.9mm (closed); 250g
  • Corning Gorilla Glass exterior

The Surface Duo is a folding gadget with a central hinge that allows you to open it like a book. Unlike Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold, there is no external display, so you must open it to utilize it.

The devices have a similar appearance, with the Duo 2 being slightly slimmer but not noticeably so. The new model is also somewhat thicker, with the most noticeable physical difference being a camera array on the back, similar to that of a standard smartphone.

The new model is available in two colors: Glacier (white) and Obsidian (black), whereas the old model only came in Glacier. The exteriors of both are coated in Corning Gorilla Glass.

The form factor remains the same, with the ability to fold it back on itself so that both displays are on the outside and can be used one-handed; the camera bump on the Duo 2 is slanted and shielded so that it fits together with a gap, rather than flush, as on the original model.

One thing to keep in mind is that the Duo 2’s screens have minor curves on the inner edge, which means that when the device is closed, some of the display may be seen down the device’s spine. This may be used as a notification center.

The Duo 2 also has stereo speakers instead of the Duo’s mono speaker, which means the music quality will be greater.

In terms of design, it’s a step forward from the original Duo, with similar elements but ingeniously modified to fit the additional camera array while also decreasing the bezels surrounding the screens for a better overall appearance.


  • Duo 2: 2x 5.8in, 1344 x 1892 pixels, 401ppi; 8.3in, 2688 x 1892 pixels combined
  • Duo: 2x 5.6in, 1350 x 1800 pixels, 401ppi; 8.1in, 2700 x 1800 pixels combined

The screens of the Duo 2 and Duo are identical, with both utilizing AMOLED panels and giving the same total pixel density of 401ppi.

However, the Duo 2 has somewhat larger screens, so there’s a little more display area and the bezels have reduced to suit this – while still providing that spine view we described before.

Both are protected by Corning Gorilla Glass, with Panos Panay, the company’s chief product officer, claiming that the Duo is protected by the toughest Gorilla Glass, Victus.

Both screens are designed to function independently, allowing side-by-side programs while also supporting upgraded apps that utilise the entire screen across both displays. You may even utilize one display as a gaming controller, such as when using Xbox Cloud Gaming.

The Duo 2, on the other hand, benefits from a 90Hz refresh rate. This will make scrolling a little smoother than on the previous Duo, making the current device’s day-to-day use a little more polished.

The Surface Pen is still supported by the Surface Duo 2, however the Surface Slim Pen may be magnetically attached for a more practical option.

Hardware and specifications

  • Duo 2: Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G, 8GB RAM, 128/256/512GB storage, 4449mAh
  • Duo: Qualcomm Snapdragon 855, 6GB RAM. 128/256GB storage, 3577mAh

There’s a significant modification in the internal hardware, which addresses one of Qualcomm’s launch issues. The Duo 2 is launching with Snapdragon 888, which is 2021 hardware, whereas the original Duo was released in 2020 with 2019 hardware.

Because it is two generations more sophisticated than the SD855, the Snapdragon 888 has incorporated 5G for quicker connection while also providing a significant performance boost over the SD855.

On the Duo 2, there’s more RAM and more storage possibilities, up to 512GB, but that comes at a higher price, and with that fast internet, you might choose cloud storage instead.

The Duo 2 has NFC, which means you’ll be able to use Google Pay, as well as a larger battery, which means it’ll likely last longer. The charger for the Duo 2 will provide 23W of charging, a little increase over the Duo’s 18W.

The Duo 2 is expected to outperform the previous Duo model in every way.


  • Duo 2 triple rear camera:
    • Main: 12MP, f/1.7, 1.4µm, OIS
    • Tele: 12MP, f/2.4, 1.0µm, OIS
    • Ultrawide: 16MP, f/2.2, 1.0µm
    • Front: 12MP, f/2.0, 1.0µm
  • Duo: 11MP, f/2.0, 1.0µm

The Surface Duo’s cameras have undergone significant changes. The original featured a single camera on the interior, but as we indicated in the design, the Duo 2 now includes a triple camera array on the exterior.

A dedicated primary, telephoto, and ultrawide camera is included, as well as a time-of-flight sensor to aid focusing. Optical picture stabilization is also offered.

In the end, this opens up a lot of possibilities, but you’ll still have to open up the Duo 2 to utilize these cameras since you’ll have to use the internal display as a viewfinder, which isn’t as handy as using a smartphone or a gadget with an external display like the Galaxy Z Fold.

We don’t know how these cameras will perform, but it’s a significant upgrade over the original Duo, which is likely to appeal to people considering it as their primary phone due to the increased photography functionality.

To summarize

The Surface Duo 2 is an improvement over the original Duo, with updated hardware and enhanced features that make it more desirable as a tablet – while also putting it in a better position to compete with certain flagship smartphones.

Much will depend on how well the software functions, both as an Android device and with Microsoft’s optimizations. That means the Surface Duo will include a lot of Microsoft programs, making it a fantastic tablet for anyone working in a Microsoft 365 environment – and hopefully a better experience than the previous edition.

For those who are serious about the Surface Duo, the new model appears to be the clear decision – but with the older model reduced to half the price, you might be persuaded to pick it up and see what it has to offer.