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Microsoft’s 2021 Surface hardware event: How to watch the computer, tablet and phone reveals

Microsoft Surface Duo

Microsoft’s rumored to be updating many of its Surface products, including its Duo phone.

Scott Stein/CNET

It’s been nearly a decade since Microsoft surprised the tech industry with its first Surface hybrid tablet. Until that moment in 2012, Microsoft had primarily been a software company. Fast forward to 2021, and Microsoft is a hardware veteran, making well-regarded Surface tablets, laptops and desktops. The company makes headphones, keyboards, mice and pens too. It even jumped back into making phones, with the Surface Duo last year.

This year, the company’s expected to announce updates for many of its Surface products, including the Duo phone. But what makes this year’s announcement that much more interesting is its timing, set for Sept. 22. The company’s event will happen less than two weeks before the company begins rolling out Windows 11, its biggest Windows software update in six years.

Microsoft also teased at least one other change in its announcement for the event, tweeting a profile image of what appears to be a thinner Surface tablet device than it’s offered so far. We’ll be keeping our eyes peeled.

Microsoft’s event will be held entirely online, starting Sept. 22 at 11 a.m. ET / 8 a.m. PT / 4 p.m. UK time and Sept. 23 at 1 a.m. in Sydney, Australia.


The event will be livestreamed on Microsoft’s website. CNET will cover the event live, as we always have, with real-time updates, insights and analysis you can only find here.

What we can expect

Microsoft’s gotten progressively better at holding online events. Despite the glitchy struggles it faced during its Windows 11 reveal, the tech giant’s taken a similar tack as companies like Apple, Samsung and Sony, which have put significant resources into creating slickly edited presentations. With the company putting so much effort into its surface line, as well as the recent promotion of product chief Panos Panay to Microsoft’s senior leadership team, it’s a good sign the presentation will be a worthwhile watch.

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