• A rumored image of the much-anticipated Microsoft Surface Phone, which is codenamed as Project Juggernaut Alpha.

A rumored image of the much-anticipated Microsoft Surface Phone, which is codenamed as Project Juggernaut Alpha. (Photo : YouTube / PhoneDesigner)

Trial production of the rumored Microsoft Surface Phone has reportedly commenced with Apple manufacturing partner Pegatron taking charge. However, the release date of the handset, dubbed as the ultimate Windows 10 mobile device, is not expected to happen until the latter part of the 2017 or early 2018.

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In a report, Phone Arena said that trial production of the Surface Phone has kicked off in Taiwan. For the project, Microsoft is said to have tapped the services of Pegatron or the same manufacturing firm responsible for the critically acclaimed Surface Studio.

But to be clear, the activity does not necessarily mean that the highly anticipated Surface Phone is coming out anytime soon. If the same report is to be believed, the device will not unbox until the last quarter of 2017 or even delayed for 2018. Rumors say Microsoft will use the Surface Phone as showcase device for the Windows 10 Redstone 3 update so the rollout will have to take place after the OS jump.

The next big update for Windows 10 is reportedly scheduled in the second half of 2017.

Yet while the debut time of the device is still months away, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella seems to have been already confirmed that work on the Surface Phone is now underway, having described the device as a unique mobile device in a recent interview.

"We will continue to be in the phone market not as defined by today's market leaders, but by what it is that we can uniquely do in what is the most ultimate mobile device," Nadella said.

And in the immediate aftermath of the revelation, leaks came out that suggest the Surface Phone will be powered by Qualcomm's next-generation chip - the Snapdragon 835, which is rumored as an 8-core 64-bit processor with Kryo 200 CPU and Adreno 540 GPU. If true, the SD 835-fired up Surface Phone is likely to enjoy RAM of no less than 6GB.

Also tipped as among the banner killer features of the Windows 10 flagship device is the ability to emulate x86 apps in conjunction with the native Continuum feature of the Microsoft operating system. Report said that if there is one device that will preview the Surface Phone in build and functionalities it will be the HP Elite x3.

As mentioned, Microsoft will only start shipping the Surface Phone following the Windows 10 Redstone 3 Update rollout, indicating that the device release date will happen in the last three months of 2017.