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Windows Central readers are not sold on the Surface Duo 2's camera setup

Surface duo 2 Leak
Surface duo 2 Leak (Image credit: YouTube: Tech Rat)

What you need to know

  • Images of the Surface Duo 2 leaked.
  • We ran a poll asking if readers like the leaked Duo 2's camera setup.
  • Most readers aren't fans of it yet.

As of this moment in time, during the writing of the post you're currently reading, the "Do you like the leaked Surface Duo 2 camera setup?" poll sits at 1,034 votes. Most readers (37.43%, 387 votes) do not like the Duo 2's camera situation, 33.66% (348 votes) are skeptical about it, and only 28.91% (299 votes) like it. In short, both of the non-positive answers have accrued more votes than the optimistic one.

In case you need a refresher on the situation, Surface Duo 2 images leaked, and they show that the sequel Duo has a different approach to camera operations than its predecessor. However, that new approach comes bundled with concerns about everything from the aesthetics of a camera bump to the actual structural threats of bending or breaking when folding the device or stopping the machine from laying flat.

Given the potential complications that may come with owning a Duo 2 as a result of its little camera bump, it's no wonder people are ever-so-slightly hesitant about hopping aboard the hype train. Not to mention that key info about the device remains unknown, such as its starting price, which may also be a source of contention.

It's worth noting that if you never hopped on the initial Surface Duo and are cautiously eyeballing the Duo 2, you may want to consider grabbing the original first to see if you like the core two-screen experience. The first Duo has been seeing wave after wave of all-time low sale prices in recent months, meaning you can likely snag it for under $400 if interested.

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to robert.carnevale@futurenet.com.

48 Comments
  • This will be an epic fail and will be the death of the Duo if it is really what they release. The vast majority of people that would buy the Duo are already engaged online and in forums regarding it. The majority of them dislike this. MS is not going to make up for those lost sales by getting Galaxy or iPhone users to switch over. That won't happen. So if you thought it sold bad last time, and now you've alienated half of those who were interested, it's going to get ugly. Maybe one of these days MS will stick to their guns and just stay with the original vision of what the product was. They haven't shown the ability to do that in the last 10 years and until they do, they will continue to repeat the same cycle. Release a product, abandon its original vision to copy others and chase consumers that would never consider them anyway, and then fail.
  • You do realize Duo 1 basically failed because of its ridiculous price? If that phone would've been reasonable priced it would have sold significantly better.
  • The price wasn't the killer. Every review highlighted that it was clearly a Gen 1 device. Nice hardware but software and OS was not ready for general consumption. It was priced competitivly.
  • Dude, the insanely high price killed the Duo. No way was the phone worth anything close to $1500. And as you see now that the price dropped by 50 plus percent its selling big time. That says it all brotha.
  • Yes. Selling an under-spec'd phone with a poor camera for a super-premium price was sheer stupidity. I'm precisely the target audience and I use Surface products almost exclusively, and even I thought it was a no-brainer to pass. Whichever MS employee was responsible for pricing should be drawn and quartered. Not only did I pass on the original Duo, the debacle that was Duo 1 killed my enthusiasm for any subsequent generations. MS will need to knock it out of the park on Duo II to regain my interest. This ridiculous looking camera bump is not a step in the right direction.
  • Don't let these companies fake you out with super high specs that run marginally better then something slightly lower spec wise. No phone needs 12gb of Ram. That's just a selling gimmick that people fall for. At the end of the day it's all about optimization. Apple proved this point years ago. Now if you're a huge camera buff then the Duo isn't for you. Not everyone base their purchase solely on a camera. Now with that said it's absolutely no denying the Duo runs miles better now then it's launch. It's a night & difference experience now.
  • Considering the fact that Iphones and Galaxy notes sell for that much regularly, price wasn't the issue. The issue was exactly as the reader posted before, it felt too much like a prototype. The larger issue was the middling specs, lack of 5G, and NFC. Most people (including myself), had decided we were going to buy the 2nd gen simply because there was the expectation that those two features (NFC and 5G) would make it on the next phone
  • Fact #1: All products drop in price just before the next version, even cars. Fact #2: the price was comparable (cheaper, actually) to other large form factor and premium phones. If you don't value the offering, that is an opinion. Another Fact: MS doesn't over emphasise hardware sales as the measure of success. They want to push the boundaries with new products and create new market categories that their partners can ultimately take to scale.
  • I have to agree here..... the design was unreal and to this second it is a incredible multi task beast....even with the lower specs. The price paid was for the most cutting edge design anywhere in the market. There is no phone that is a true two app multi tasker that the Duo is.
  • Or, it will be a even more appealing device to average consumers because of the upgraded camera experience. Why would the average consumer not buy version 2 because of the camera bump? They are already used to it. The average high end consumer is using a smartphone with a bump as I type this. Stop all the panicking. A camera bump should be the least of anyone's worries. A good user experience, more features, better stability, a functional camera, NFC, modern internals, etc. Are what Duo needs to succeed... Adding a better camera/camera experience isn't something to worry about or complain about. 🙄 Gotta look at the bigger picture here.. Gotta look at the entire picture and stop focusing on one aspect. This time next year nobody here (that buys SDV2) will even be concerned about the bump. That is reality and that's exactly how it's going to play out. I'm sure of it.
  • The big picture here, is that a dual screen device isn’t ever going to be mainstream. The trade offs aren’t worth the couple benefits. Microsoft is wasting their time with this. Duo 1 proved that even when done nearly perfectly, dual screens aren’t worth it.
  • You are speaking in your opinion only brotha. Dual screen phones will definitely become more main stream in the years to come. Price point, optimization & marketing will determine the outcome.
  • I'll be replacing a Note 9 between 3 to 4 years from purchase, and unless there is some knocked-it-outta-the-park general use application, a huge battery, or tremendous camera suite Microsoft has been keeping under the radar for this device, I see nothing even remotely compelling about the form factor and hybrid OS. It may be a nice gadget phone, but it does nothing that much better than a monolithic phone to justify the $$$$ or the WhoKnows OS support. My next phone will last 3 to 4 years, and I've got no faith that MS will support this device like Apple supports iOS, which is my choice at this point. That's especially true for the $$$$ this kludge is being sold for. To me, this is an orphan device that has been given a limited time to succeed, especially when MS can jump to an actual one screen folding device when the tech is cost-effective, and that completely uncertain corporate strategy does not match my replacement cycles in any way. A phone is a tool for me, not a gee-whiz status symbol, even with with 'aerodynamic styling'. And, if there is a really useful Duo 4 in the future, I can pass on my current phone and buy one. However, I am NOT in the business of funding MS's research and development cycle, much less being a captive beta tester for their Not Ready for Prime Time offerings, ANYMORE.
  • Clearly you've never used a Duo. There are many who have used it, who find the form factor compelling and the user experience unique and productive. I think you'll find MS have supported their devices as well, if not better than other companies. They provided ongoing support for their Windows Phones long after they stopped selling them. They are providing monthly updates for the Duo (and have committed to three years of updates) that have dramatically improved the usability and stability of the device. Get your facts straight...
  • You've obviously never owned / used a Duo. I've been using it for months, and I honestly can't go back to a one screen phone without getting annoyed. I'm a developer and use it for work all the time. In fact, it's become second nature to me, and if you saw the posts on Reddit and other places, you'd see that there are quite a few people the same way. Just because you don't understand something or how it can be beneficial doesn't mean it doesn't do some things better than a "monolithic phone". Multi-tasking is definitely and infinitely better. Reading an ebook, definitely better. Being able to replace many functions of a laptop, yes. Media consumption is even great in tent mode. These are just a few but there are more.
  • How many 'average consumers' spend $1500 on a phone?
  • Where did the $1500 come from? The Duo was listed as $1400 on release and has (as all phones do) steadily dropped in price since then.
  • The key here are the "two non - positive" choices (at least it was for me). I'm ecstatic the overall hardware may be in line with current flagship tech products. I'm "sceptical" only because I do not have more information regarding the camera specs. I'm hopeful a bumper will be available for a Surface Pen next to the camera. Most of all I like the changes enough, I'm waiting on the Duo 2 in order to compare it with the Fold 3 before upgrading to a new productivity device.
  • I too voted "sceptical" because I'm not sure. I have no issue with the bump in principle - it's like the people complaining about it haven't seen a modern phone to think that they could include a high-end camera without a bump - but my concern is the ergonomics of actually taking a photo. It seem to me that you won't be able to have the screens folded together in either direction and that will make one-handed portrait or two-handed landscape shots awkward to take. I'm hopeful of being proved wrong but we won't know until the device is actually in people's hands. It may not even come to Australia, so the decision may be taken out of my hands regardless.
  • I hate the look with the bump, but I have to accept that in order for a decent camera, the bump is necessary. That's just the way it is.
  • I wonder if the reason for this mixed reaction is that camera bump looks like camera bumps on 3 year old phones? It feels like no thought was given to the aesthetic design of the bump; almost like it was designed by an engineer, not a designer. Had they copied the latest pixel bump or OnePlus 8t or even taken some cues from the latest Samsung bumps they might have had less negative reaction. This bump with it's tall rectangle design feels like a OnePlus 7 or Samsung S9. It makes duo 2 look old and outdated. Maybe at least we'll get white housing on the white version to make it look a tad closer to modern phones?
  • That's how I feel. No aesthetics. Google actually made the Pixel 6 bump part of the design.
  • It looks just like the camera bump on my Samsung Note 20 and the latest IPhone
  • Neither of which are dual screen phones that fold.
  • So what difference do you think that that should make to the camera bump? The fact that the outer surface is flat and actually at a slight angle will make it more stable when the screens are folded back all the way so I'm curious what the issue actually is.
  • There would be much, much less hate if the bump was white instead of black. Can't hate what you can't see.
    This is half the reason I'm getting the black one. Can't see the bump.
  • Pre production devices
  • I agree brotha. And it'll definitely look much better when it's ready for release.
  • Looks bolted on. I'd rather have a better front camera, with a camera bump behind that folds into a divot on the other screen. With this setup, the only way to make use of this new camera is to take pics with the screens unfolded. Kinda like taking pics with an iPad. Lame!
  • It's such a thin device, I'm sure there's no room for a divot. They'd have to make the device much thicker, which kind of goes against the whole premise.
  • I heard that this is a photoshop of a prototype of the 1st duo and this is not confirmed. Seeing that it did not sell well at all makes me wonder if they would make a 2nd one. I have one myself and it has been much more stable, and useful as a multitasking device for work. I do hope the 2nd one does come out but am doubtful this is what it will look like at all.
  • I'm not so sure I understand everyone's problem with the camera. iPhone, Samsung's and several other companies have that same thing. It's just the price of having good cameras with ultra thin phones. I am excited about the Duo 2. Great hardware specs, all the features you expect on a $1300 phone.
  • And other than the Fold... how many of those are folding dual screen phones?
    And the Fold only open to 180 degrees, not all the way back.
    So.. apples to oranges much?
  • It doesn't matter what MS try and do in the Android market not enough people will buy an MS phone with Android on it... They should just give up... I feel sorry for the people who bought these things... They will be lucky to get Android 11... If you are seriously thinking of buying a Surface Duo, just get a Fold 3 it will be light years better... Since I switched to a Samsung flagship I have never been happier... Still prefer my 950XL though...
  • Well, here's the thing. If Microsoft made an Android phone that's deeply integrated into Windows (but still worked fine with MacOS) and offered all the "advantages" of iOS while still letting users use stock Android apps and even integrate Android apps directly into Windows (hits: Win 11 is purported to have this feature coming)... then to be honest, I think that would be a HUGE sell to businesses and people in the Windows ecosystem - you know 80% of the entire computer market? But sure. Samsung.
  • And not charge $1500 for the damn phone.
  • Which phone did they charge $1500 for? The Duo was originally listed at $1400.
  • Have you even held a Fold or a Duo? The feel, user experience, way you work is so different between the two, it's hard to imagine you'd feel the way you do if you'd actually used them.
  • Let's face it, it looks absolutely awful. The black is aweful. It looks like an afterthought. Not that you can ever make a bump out on a device that should fold flat look great but why not make it square and design it so it looks like a windows symbol. Why not match the windows logo on the other back panel. Yes, I know it's not a windows device, but it would look a lot better and dovetail into there other products like windows and office in the cloud. In fact, if MS was smart they would include an option on their Launcher to mimic windows.
  • Sorry, but I think it's a fake. It's just hard to buy that after all that work to make the world's slimmest phone with basically one killer feature: dual screens that can be folded flat at 180 and all the way back to 360, they'd turn around and glue a massive wart on one side. There's also the glass case - there are already lots of reports of it cracking under normal use - having that bump banging against it is going to be a disaster. And they didn't need to do the bump, they could have put the camera into the bezel at the top on the left and made it so you'd fold it back to move the cameras so they're back facing, or they could have added an edge to one side that the other side folds into giving them a 'wart' all the way along one side for the cameras while still letting it fold flat. I mean there were a lot of better, more imaginative solutions to this problem than "stick a wart on the back". Is it *possible* this is real? Yes. Is it likely? No. While we're on it - why is everyone even accepting there will be a Duo 2? The Duo isn't exactly flying off the shelves and AT&T - the only carrier selling it directly - stopped carrying it after just six months and their stock is being dumped on firesales all over the place. I would love it if MSFT just brought the Duo up to modern specs, added NFC and got the price down to the $500-$700 range. PS: I did buy one at the $400 firesale price - because for me, that's the most I'd pay for a year old phone with two year old guts.
  • Make the camera bump not as high, but perhaps wider, or round, centered, or use the 4 window design of the logo. I do believe that the Surface Duo has a chance of being successful, as long as the price is right, and the device is up to par with software and hardware. I think the design is pretty awesome, and I can see that it will create a new category for powerful pocket devices with a hinge and dual screens.
  • This is what Microsoft could have done with a camera bump and added an outside notification screen as well.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60KipXCkO38
  • Would be awesome if it was flipped around to the rear.
  • But on the front it works as high quality quickcam in laptop mode for Team meetings and Windows Hello for opening your device, and good camera for selfies. And then you can fold the screen all the way open (no bump) for high quality shooting photos. Not to mention the notification screen is in the correct place as well.
  • I'll judge it when I see it.
    Then, I'll likely buy it.
  • While I find these latest leaks to be quite disconcerting, at the end of the day I won't really consider myself getting my hands on the Duo 2 because 1) I'm too broke to probably buy it and 2) no local support outside the Americas and some of Europe lol.
  • I am probably in the minority. But, i find it to be a compelling design if the software and hardware work as well as the Surface Pro 7. I want to run MS Office 365 with all capabilities. If it does, will it replace my MS Surface Pro 7? Will it record lengthy audio and video in OneNote like SP 7? If it does, can it replace my phone? Then i want to know how good the camers are.
  • I am interested in the other features. Camera bump isn't compelling unless there is a recess introduced on the other side to enable folding back 180° unimpeded. We shall see. I probably will grab it regardless after a week of watching/reading reviews and drawing my own conclusions. Duo 1 will go to the g/f if she wants it.