Microsoft brings Continuum to the mid-range with support for Snapdragon 617 SoC

The list of phones that support Microsoft’s new Continuum feature just got a bit longer, as the company has now officially added support for the mid-range Snapdragon 617 SoC.

Microsoft’s Continuum allows users to plug their Windows 10 Mobile phones into a dock (or wirelessly connect to it), connect a keyboard and mouse and use their phones much as they would a regular Windows 10 PC, being able to run Universal Windows Apps in a desktop environment, on a big screen. In theory, this could be a great boost to a user’s productivity and Microsoft is looking to push this feature and its phones to the enterprise.

And as part of that journey Microsoft took an important step by expanding support for a new chip, the Snapdragon 617. This fulfills an earlier promise from the company that mentioned Continuum would be coming to non-flagship phones at some point. Of course, this new addition was indirectly disclosed a few weeks ago with the NuAns NEO Windows 10 Mobile handset that uses this chip and supports Continuum.

Up until now, Continuum was only available on the Snapdragon 808 and 810 CPUs, found in the Lumia 950 models, but with this addition, Microsoft is looking to expand its reach and value proposition. Seeing as this feature is ostensibly designed for the enterprise customer, having support for mid-range devices that can be affordable and purchased for lots of employees is an important step forward.

There’s also a bit more info, on what are the exact requirements for Continuum and you can see the specs needed in the table below.

Component Minimum Requirements Premium Requirements
Applications processor

Qualcomm MS8952, MS8992, MS8994

Dual SIM support
RAM 2 GB RAM for phones with display resolution of 720p 3 GB RAM for phones with display resolution of 1080p or more
Flash storage ≥16 GB nonremovable flash memory
microSD

Optional

microSD card support

Bluetooth

Bluetooth 4.0 support is required
Wi-Fi Supports at least 802.11n dual band 802.11ac dual band recommended. 2x2 antenna recommended.
Miracast Supports Windows 10 Miracast extensions.
USB USB dual-role required to support wired dock configuration. USB 2.0 support required USB 3.0 recommended. USB Type C connector strongly recommended to support wired configurations.

Unfortunately, though the addition of Snapdragon 617 is a good move for Microsoft, it’s still not clear whether Continuum is of real interest to the enterprise market, nor indeed to regular consumers. While on paper the feature sounds like the future of computing, Microsoft will still have to prove its implementation works in the months ahead.

Source: Microsoft via: NokiaPowerUser

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