As we’ve already talked about at great length, Microsoft finally revealed the mythical Surface phone, although it doesn't really want you to call it a phone , the Surface Duo. Unlike the Neo, the Duo does not run on Windows 10X. Although it’s apparently packed with Microsoft’s apps and services, the actual operating system that the Duo runs is Android , and that has a few people upset.
A petition on Change.org has been begun circulating to urge Microsoft to reconsider offering a Windows 10X-based version, along with the version that runs Android. The petition begins by stating the following:
The newly announced Surface Duo running Android ONLY does not accomplish what many windows UWP developers and Microsoft fans want. We want a Surface Duo device that runs the new Windows 10x OS and that emulates Android apps.
Although Mr. Panay was a little vague on stage, it does appear that the Duo is indeed powered by Android. In the course of one particular interview, Mr. Panay said that Android is what the company is going to use for "mobile devices", and that "anything above that, everything is Windows”.
One of the reasons outlined in the petition is Microsoft's promise of one code base with its UWP initiative, which would allow an app to run on any device, including devices like the Duo. The reasoning is that running emulated Android apps on top of Windows would accomplish the same thing as the current strategy, while also not breaking the promise made with the debut of the Universal Windows Platform.
What the author of the petition doesn’t seem to understand is that when Microsoft made the UWP promise, it’s goal was to bring as close to the same experience across all devices, whether on a desktop, a laptop, tablet or phone. What they soon came to realize is they couldn’t quite deliver that experience without breaking the integrity of each platform, not to mention the nightmare they bestowed upon developers. There was a reason why the Microsoft Store was a wasteland for the longest time. Even to this day it’s not quite up to par with its rivals.
While I concede that their new strategy does seem like a broken promise, Microsoft, at some point, had to learn from their mistakes. They know that if they jump all in back into the phone market, that uphill battle would be an even more difficult fight than it was back in 2015.
At the time of this article, the petition has 484 signatures.