What you need to know
- Microsoft shipped an update to the Surface Duo 2 this week.
- The update only includes security fixes, which continues a trend of updates without features for the Surface Duo 2.
- This is the first month that the original Surface Duo is out of support, meaning the phone did not receive a security update.
Microsoft rolled out a small update to the Surface Duo 2 this week. The update is only a security patch, making it hardly newsworthy on its own. What's perhaps more interesting is the fact that the original Surface Duo did not receive a security update. We knew that would be the case, since the Surface Duo is now out of support, but sometimes it's important to mark an occasion.
As for the update for the Surface Duo 2, it "Addresses scenarios outlined in the Android Security Bulletin – October 2023," according to Microsoft. The change log may not include many details, but it's important to keep devices patched against security threats. Microsoft releases updates in phases, so you may not see the October update for Surface Duo 2 just yet.
No more Surface Duo updates
The lack of an update for the original Surface Duo this month is not a surprise. October is just the first month since Microsoft dropped official software support for the first-generation Surface Duo. Microsoft promised three years of updates for the foldable phone that first shipped with Android 10. The company kept that promise, at least in terms of security updates.
The original Surface Duo eventually received an update to Android 12L, which was the second major OS update the phone received. Most high-end flagship phones get three major OS updates after launch, but Microsoft didn't go down that route for the Duo.
The original Surface Duo will continue to work, even without receiving updates. The issue is that the lack of security updates going forward will leave devices increasingly susceptible to attack as new bugs appear and are left unpatched.
Those with an original Surface Duo, or even a Surface Duo 2, may want to check out the unofficial Android 14 ROM for Surface Duo.
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Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at email@example.com.
"Most high-end flagship phones get three major OS updates after launch, but Microsoft didn't go down that route for the Duo."Reply
That may be true for Android phones. iPhones get a minimum of 5 years of support, which means at least 5 major OS updates.
"The original Surface Duo will continue to work, even without receiving updates. The issue is that the lack of security updates going forward will leave devices increasingly susceptible to attack as new bugs appear and are left unpatched."
Only 40,000 Surface Duo 1s were sold. In a world with 5 billion Android phones and 2 billion Apple phones, do you really think that anyone is going waste time and effort to target the few thousand remaining Duo 1s still in use?
The phrase "security by obscurity" applies here.