When the Surface Duo launched in September 2020, it was equipped with Android 10 even though Android 11 had just been released. Many figured that Android 11 would hit the dual-screened phone weeks after its release. It didn’t. And when the Surface Duo 2 was released in October 2021 with Android 11 onboard, many figured that Android 11 would be heading to the original version shortly. It didn’t.
We had to double-check the calendar when we initially received the news to be sure it wasn’t April 1st. You might have thought this day would never come, but it has, and Microsoft is now updating the original Surface Duo to Android 11. The release of a one-generation-old operating system has never elicited such joy among smartphone users, and here’s why. In the United States and Europe, the Android 11 update is only available to unlocked (non-AT&T) models.
Microsoft did tell OG Surface Duo buyers to expect the update to be delivered before 2021 was over and when that didn’t happen, users of the device were upset leaving Microsoft’s Kimmo Lehtosalo, Senior Director of Program Management at the firm, to say that unlocked models would soon receive the update. Explaining the delay, he said, “We originally planned to deploy Android 11 as an update for Surface Duo in December, but we needed a few more weeks to ensure a great experience for Surface Duo customers.”
Lehtosalo also said that the update would be rolling out in a few weeks starting with the unlocked models. And sure enough, beginning today, the Android 11 update is making its way to unlocked Surface Duo models in North America and Europe according to Microsoft’s Surface Duo update page (via 9to5Google). If your Surface Duo is branded AT&T, you’ll need to be a bit more patient as the aforementioned Microsoft update site says, “For locked or unlocked AT&T Surface Duos, we are testing this release and it is pending final validation.”