Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) executives chose not to answer any question about the much talked about Surface Phone during last week’s Ignite conference. The fact that the execs refused to answer questions about the Surface Phone raises further suspicions that the firm is indeed working on a Surface Phone. In truth, the firm doesn’t have anything to gain by allowing the rumor, hype and buzz about the Surface Phone to continue if wasn’t actually working on the smartphone.
Nonetheless, during multiple presentations at the Ignite conference, Microsoft execs dropped hints about what to expect from the Surface Phone. Many people didn’t pay much attention, but the execs were consistently deflecting questions about the Surface Phone to point out that the HP’s Elite X3 is the most advanced Windows 10 smartphone in the market.
Can the HP’s Elite X3 tell us what to expect from the Surface
The Elite X3 from HP is a loaded phone that highlights the best of Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) ‘s Windows Mobile in the same way that Nexus devices display the full capabilities of Google’s Android. Powered with a 2.15GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor and 4GB of DDR4 RAM, the device sports 64GB of storage. Rumors have hinted that that the Surface Phone will sport Intel’s latest Kaby Lake processor and one of its variants will have as much as 8GB RAM and 512GB storage.
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The Elite X3’s hardware also suggests that the Surface Phone will be better than rival phones such as the iPhone 7 in terms of hardware specs. The Elixe X3 has 5.96″ diagonal WQHD (2560×1440) AMOLED display dual-biometrics (iris and fingerprint scanners). About two weeks ago, last week, news broke that the Surface Phone sports a fingerprint scanner built into the glass of the phone. Additional features to expect in the Surface Phone include a 4,150mAh battery and Qi wireless charging. The HP Elite X3 is also tough with Corning Gorilla Glass 4, 810G military spec, and an IP 67-rating for durability.
One of the impressive features of HP Elite X3 that makes it a forerunner for the Surface Phone is its ability to run three different modes. Many rumors have suggested that the Surface Phone will function as a smartphone and also have the ability to run classic Win32 apps. Hence, you can easily connect the Surface Phone to a monitor, the screen becomes a trackpad, and the cover doubles as a keyboard.
The Elite X3 is now available in Microsoft Store
More interesting is the fact that HP’s Elite X3 is now available at the Microsoft Store for $799. Many people have thought that the Elite X3 will be pricey because of its focus on the Enterprise market but the $799 price tag is fair enough for the device and the HP Elite X3 Desk Dock for transforming the phone into a PC. If you’ll want to have an impressive Windows Phone now rather than later, HP Elite X3 might be a good stopgap until the Surface Phone makes its debut.
Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Surface Phone might not make its debut until 2017 at the earliest because both the processor and the OS of the phone are not yet ready. Most Windows Phone run Windows 32-Bit OS even though some of them have 64-bit ARM-based Qualcomm processors. Jason Whitehorn, partner software engineer manager of the Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft notes that 32-bit is “not really a limitation for us since the devices are all 4GB [of RAM] or less. But that will change over the next couple of years.”