What is Andromeda ?

There seems to be a lot of confident talk about an Andromeda device, without any basis in fact or annoucement from Microsoft.

Yesterday on Windows Weekly it was suggested Andromeda as being a small mobile Windows based Note taking device.

But surely any mobile device, will require an mobile Apps ecosystem, and that excludes Windows as a platform. A mobile device without Apps, will not be acceptable to the buisness or consumer market. The only solution woud be an Android based device that would host OneNote and Android Apps the user wanted.

Conversation 25 comments

  • Paul Thurrott

    Premium Member
    19 July, 2018 - 8:18 am

    <p>I feel like I couldn't be more transparent about what we actually know about Andromeda and what is speculation..</p><p><br></p><p>Also, have repeatedly raised the app/ecosystem issue as why this device makes no sense.</p>

    • Jasi

      21 July, 2018 - 7:57 am

      <blockquote>Ah, but you didn't address the "Forked Android" issue or why using Android flat out should not be a distinct possibility…given that Microsoft is busy writing a lot of their software to run on Android. I say it's time for Microsoft to join the party rather than continue trying to create their own. Heck we can now run Linux within Windows, what exactly is wrong (other than lack of will and guts) with running Android apps on Windows?</blockquote><p><br></p>

      • Paul Thurrott

        Premium Member
        22 July, 2018 - 3:52 am

        <blockquote><em><a href="#294286">In reply to Jasi:</a></em></blockquote><p>I do think Android makes more sense than Windows for this form factor.</p>

  • PeterC

    19 July, 2018 - 8:32 am

    <p>Well apart from all the blue sky tech thinking any of us may offer (me included), the one thing thats always got my attention is the name, Andromeda. Go check wiki on the Greek myths relating to andromeda. Basically – Andromeda was the very beautiful daughter of Cepheus and Cassiopeia, who is stripped and chained to a rock as a sacrifice to a sea monster – but she is saved by Perseus mounted on a flying horse, (think Unicorn). </p><p><br></p><p>Maybe the question isn't what is Andromeda, but who/where is the hero (Perseus) and his Unicorn in this evolving Greek tragedy. I'll get my coat…….</p>

    • Hassan Timité

      19 July, 2018 - 6:50 pm

      <blockquote><a href="#293616"><em>In reply to PeterC:</em></a></blockquote><p>Not a unicorn, Pegasus born from the blood of Medusa.</p>

      • PeterC

        20 July, 2018 - 6:11 am

        <blockquote><a href="#293890"><em>In reply to Hassan_Timite:</em></a></blockquote><p>Right, thanks. So if andromeda the “device” is the beautiful woman in Greek mythology, then I guess panos Panay must be Perseus, riding Pegasus (the surface team) which was born from the blood of Steve the medusa Balmers surface rt. </p>

  • jimchamplin

    Premium Member
    19 July, 2018 - 9:06 am

    <p>Andromeda is a common spiral galaxy roughly 780 kpc from our current location.</p>

    • hrlngrv

      Premium Member
      19 July, 2018 - 5:22 pm

      <blockquote><a href="#293618"><em>In reply to jimchamplin:</em></a></blockquote><p>Nah. The daughter of K<span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34);">ing Cepheus and Queen Cassiopeia, rescued from the sea monster Cetus by Perseus.</span></p>

      • jimchamplin

        Premium Member
        19 July, 2018 - 11:59 pm

        <blockquote><a href="#293862"><em>In reply to hrlngrv:</em></a></blockquote><p>Aha! Namesake of said galaxy! </p>

    • offTheRecord

      20 July, 2018 - 6:25 am

      <blockquote><a href="#293618"><em>In reply to jimchamplin:</em></a></blockquote><p><span style="background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255); color: rgb(34, 34, 34);">RA 0h 42m 44s | Dec +41° 16′ 9″</span></p>

    • Lauren Glenn

      20 July, 2018 - 8:53 am

      <blockquote><a href="#293618"><em>In reply to jimchamplin:</em></a></blockquote><p>It was a show starring Kevin Sorbo and Lexa Doig (who is married, or at least was, to Michael Shanks from Stargate SG-1)….. or at least until Syfy bought it and killed it within 1 season by ruining it.</p>

      • jimchamplin

        Premium Member
        20 July, 2018 - 4:23 pm

        <blockquote><a href="#294005"><em>In reply to alissa914:</em></a></blockquote><p>SyFy… Where sci-fi goes to die. Why does that channel exist again?</p>

        • hrlngrv

          Premium Member
          20 July, 2018 - 5:54 pm

          <p><a href="#294125"><em>In reply to jimchamplin:</em></a></p><p>No respect for its megashark franchise.</p>

  • scoob101

    19 July, 2018 - 9:30 am

    <p>"<span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">surely any mobile device, will require an mobile Apps ecosystem, and that excludes Windows as a platform"</span></p><p><br></p><p>Not necessarily. </p><p><br></p><p>Assuming you are looking at a 8-10" folding device, then UWP`s fit just fine on that screen size. So Windows 10 (potentially with a replacement shell) fits just fine. </p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p>

  • Chris_Kez

    Premium Member
    19 July, 2018 - 10:41 am

    <p>Both Paul and Mary Jo have talked and written at length about what they do and don't know from their various sources. The folks at Windows Central have done the same, with Daniel Rubino saying he has actually seen the OS running (by which he means he has seen an early version of how the software will look). There have also been several patents released that relate to different <em>aspects</em> of a small, foldable device. A lack of announcements by Microsoft doesn't make all of this any less "real". Microsoft never announced Surface Mini, which was a real thing they created. </p>

    • Jules Wombat

      19 July, 2018 - 4:14 pm

      <blockquote><a href="#293648"><em>In reply to Chris_Kez:</em></a></blockquote><p>and ?</p>

      • Chris_Kez

        Premium Member
        20 July, 2018 - 11:25 am

        <blockquote><a href="#293809"><em>In reply to Jules_Wombat:</em></a></blockquote><p>Your post is titled "What is Andromeda?" and your first assertion is that we don't know what it is because Microsoft has not publicly addressed it. My point is that we actually do have a decent idea of what Andromeda is/was. Just because that information is off-the-record doesn't <em>necessarily </em>make it non-believable. I shared the example of Surface Mini as an instance where we had great, detailed information about a product even though Microsoft never discussed it any official capacity. Apologies for any lack of clarity. </p><p><br></p>

        • Jules Wombat

          20 July, 2018 - 3:11 pm

          <blockquote><a href="#294051"><em>In reply to Chris_Kez:</em></a></blockquote><p>OK Cheers</p><p>Brad also provided his view in todays (20/07/2018) Sams report. Where he speculated an Andromeda device could either run a forked version of Android with access to Google Play Store Apps (Subject to EU ruling) or if it really is Windows, that it would presume upon wide availability if PWA Apps. But that basically Microsoft have to go back and figure out what purpose such a note taking device really meets. </p>

  • hrlngrv

    Premium Member
    19 July, 2018 - 5:04 pm

    <p>If Andromeda devices would be <em style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">small mobile Windows-based note-taking devices</em><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">, how much demand would there be for them vs Samsung Galaxy Notes (SGNs)? Presumably the Andromeda devices would only have what's available in the MSFT Store for anything extra whereas SGNs would have the full Google Play store available. If Andromeda devices were Android-based, just how much does MSFT want to become a hardware makers with little or no prospects of iterative software license revenues?</span></p>

  • jean

    20 July, 2018 - 2:46 am

    <p>for an ubiquitous platform to be successful – regardless of the vendor – the fundamental prerequisite is the ability to adapt to the human (or better environmental) interface(s), the currently most dominant ones (not in order of relevance) touch, speech, gesture, pen, keyboard and mouse as input monitor, audio and force feedback as output.</p><p><br></p><p>the form factors of existing and new device classes WOULD ideally require the ability to adapt to the physical viewport and so does the "Shell" of an operating system. not surprisingly the major platforms tried and are still trying to grow/shrink from their current widest ecosystem: iOS apps on MacOS or Android apps on ChromeOS and also Windows with it's toxic dumping ground of APIs. A half-baked attempt is the browser "platform" where tailored sites (i.e. m.xyz.com) are sort of a way to accommodate for those needs – but who ever pinched and zoomed websites knows how far that goes.</p><p><br></p><p>Add the dual screen complexity in the mix, where in one of the usage scenarios one screen might be hosting the virtual keyboard being used as input device to an application on the other screen and thus having to have the focus… that's where the core of the OS will need to be extensible.</p><p><br></p><p>back to your question what is Andromeda ? I don't really know exactly – what I do know is: for it to succeed it must address the above, all of the above. Can we or better can Microsoft wait until the developers fully embrace this ? can they even finally resolve the shell topic ? </p><p><br></p><p>my 2 cents: get the basics right (shell at least to a degree) and get that device on the market (in a slightly broader scale as HoloLens) – waiting for the apps to get there first will certainly never happen. How big does an app ecosystem need to be (regardless of UWP or whatever) : really not that big 2 dozens of apps is all it needs given these are the ones with the biggest reach. </p><p><br></p><p><br></p>

  • dcdevito

    21 July, 2018 - 10:19 am

    <p>It's a DOA device Windows fanboys and gals are holding onto in hopes of Microsoft making a comeback in mobile. </p>

    • hrlngrv

      Premium Member
      21 July, 2018 - 3:24 pm

      <p><a href="https://www.thurrott.com/forums/microsoft/mobile/thread/what-is-andromeda#294290&quot; target="_blank"><em>In reply to dcdevito:</em></a></p><p>Maybe a bit early to write it off completely, but if it were a foldable, 2-screen device, then when unfolded it'd have the squarest screen only device. Are there any mobile apps geared towards square screens? Would these devices need to take off almost entirely on the strength of their built-in capabilities?</p><p>MSFT can succeed, maybe even spectacularly so, without making another mobile device ever. I don't get the certainty some profess that MSFT is doomed without another foray into mobile device hardware.</p>

      • skane2600

        21 July, 2018 - 9:19 pm

        <blockquote><em><a href="#294362">In reply to hrlngrv:</a></em></blockquote><p>I guess it would depend on the kind of the app, but I think a lot of apps aren't dependent on the shape of the screen. The same app can run on different phones with different aspect ratios and square is just another one. Having said that, I'm not an Andromeda believer. </p><p><br></p><p>I agree with you that a Microsoft-branded mobile device isn't necessary for Microsoft to survive, but the Post-PC myth dies hard.</p>

  • Teresasteele

    25 July, 2018 - 2:15 am

    <p>I am glad to know about Andromeda. Thanks for your views.</p>


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