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Is the Rumored Microsoft Surface Phone Really a Threat to the Apple iPhone?

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Microsoft Corporation was expected by many to release a completely new handset, dubbed Surface Phone, this month in New York City. But the Surface Phone did not attend the October event, where the software titan introduced its first ever desktop computer, Surface Studio. The new Windows 10 Mobile-powered phone may replace iPhone as smartphone superstar.

Microsoft remains silent about the Surface Phone, but the rumor mill has been speculating that the Surface Phone will have three models and will target business and corporate users. Reports suggesting that the Surface Phone would change Microsoft’s fate in the smartphone market, being dominated by Apple and Samsung. Let’s explore the Surface Phone rumors about features, specs, and potential release date.

Microsoft Surface Phone (MSFT)

Microsoft Surface Phone Rumors

Rumors suggest that the Surface Phone will come in three versions: a consumer model, a business model, and an enthusiast edition. The base model will have 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, with a mid-range offering coming with 6GB RAM and 128GB storage.

The handset is rumored to feature a 20 megapixel rear camera with a Carl Zeiss lens. It will have an 8GB RAM and a Kaby Lake processor, and will run Windows 10 Redstone operating system. The phone will work with the Surface Pen and a removable keyboard. The accessories will make professionals and business users more productive. The Surface Pen will be compatible with the new smartphone for a more precise and accurate input method.

The Surface Phone is rumored to come with a unique fingerprint sensor. The company’s patent filing reveals that company plans to integrate the fingerprint sensor on the phone’s display.

The most exciting feature will be support Win32 apps, allowing the phone to run legacy Windows program that people run on their PCs. The availability of Win32 apps on the Surface Phone might give a compelling reason to iOS and Android users to switch to a Windows Mobile. If the reports are true and Microsoft makes the Surface Phone to run Win32 apps, the Surface Phone could get an edge over iPhone and Android devices.

The Surface Phone is expected to challenge the dominance of Apple’s iPhone in the smartphone industry and will replace the company’s Lumia smartphone lineup. The Surface Phone will be the most secure and productivity-focused phone and could attract business and corporate customers, according to the reports.

Release Date

Some reports suggested that Microsoft Corporation will launch the Surface Phone sometime in 2016. Microsoft analyst Mary Jo Foley believes the Surface Phone to arrive next year.

“If and when anything like a Surface Phone ends up materializing, it will likely be late 2017 or maybe even not until 2018, my contacts have said recently,” Foley was quoted as saying by The Christian Times.

The Surface Phone will cost between $699- $1,100, according to a report in The Bitbag. The base model will carry a price tag of $699, while the top-level will be available at $1,099.

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Based in Saudi Arabia, Siraj has a strong understanding of and passion for accounting and finance. He has worked for international clients for many years on several projects related to the stock market, equity research and other business, accounting and finance related projects. Siraj is a published financial analyst on the world's leading websites including SeekingAlpha, TheStreet, MSN, and others.

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