Panos Panay, Microsoft’s Chief Product Officer, first unveiled the device to the public at Microsoft’s hardware event in 2019. Surface Neo runs the under-development OS Windows 10X, which is supposedly based on the Windows Core OS platform.
According to Foley, Panay has circulated the word internally that Microsoft won’t ship Windows 10X-powered Surface Neo devices this year. There won’t be any third-party Windows 10X dual-screen PCs in the market either.
Of course, it’s safe to assume that the coronavirus pandemic has had some impact on the development of Surface Duo and Windows 10X. But it seems that the company has some important work left and doesn’t want to release a half-baked product in the market.
Windows 10X could arrive for single-screen PCs
Many have speculated that sooner or later, Microsoft will bring Windows 10X to conventional PCs, although, the company has been tight-lipped so far.
According to Foley, Microsoft is internally prioritizing the development of Windows 10X for single-screen PCs and 2-in-1 convertibles. It could be assumed as the motivation behind the reported delay.
However, that can’t happen before Microsoft manages to cross some technical hurdles, which include fixing performance issues when running legacy (Win32) apps.
It’s known that Microsoft is actively working to improve the performance of virtualized Win32 apps on Windows 10X and is likely to achieve success in the coming future. Not just Windows 10X, this new virtualization capability might land first on the regular Windows 10, along with a couple of other features.
For the uninitiated, Windows 10X uses different kinds of containers to virtualize a variety of apps, including Win32. Also, Microsoft is working on a feature that will allow the OS to install updates in just 90 seconds. If you want, you can use the Windows 10X emulator to get a taste of the futuristic OS.
Surface Duo would still be there
A piece of good news that we are hearing is Microsoft’s other dual-screen device, Surface Duo, will arrive in 2020. The Android-powered smartphone was initially scheduled to launch alongside Surface Neo during the holiday season.
However, past reports have suggested that Microsoft is running ahead of schedule and could release Surface Duo sometime around summers. The ongoing global crisis did affect Microsoft’s supply chains, but it was later known that things started getting back to order.