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Microsoft’s discontinued Andromeda operating system on the Lumia 950


Microsoft is now an integral part of the Android ecosystem. This is because the Redmond company has a popular launcher and also because the Surface Duo devices are Android devices themselves. But Microsoft has also tried it here itself. The codename Andromeda haunted the Windows world about four years ago.

For a long time, no one really knew whether this meant software or hardware, but now it is clear that it was both: an operating system (Andromeda OS) and an accompanying dual-screen smartphone (Andromeda). However, it was never published as the project was discontinued. At the time, however, Redmond was experimenting with the Andromeda operating system and running it on a Lumia 950, among other things.

However, this software was never intended for this, so it was an internal test of an unfinished pre-release. The intention was undoubtedly to create a successor to Windows Phone, but of course nothing came of it.

Pen Use is the focus

But you still get a sense of what Andromeda OS should look like. There was a lock screen inspired by Windows Phone, including Cortana notifications. An interesting idea was to be able to use the lock screen directly as an area for notes with a pen – opening an app wouldn’t have been necessary. The pen would play a major role: an app called Journal would take center stage, with ink, sticky notes, images, and 3D objects. However, many ideas have certainly been given a second life, some can be found today in the Surface Duo and even Windows 11.


Mark Goodman

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