It's Official: Samsung Is Going All In On Folding Smartphones

Image: iotgadgets

Samsung's folding 'Galaxy X' is one of the industry's worst-kept secrets. The company showed off a prototype at IFA 2018 and explicitly named "foldable OLED smartphones" as one of its key products for the next financial year.

Previously, it had been assumed that the Galay X would be offered in extremely limited quantities to gauge consumers' interest in this new, experimental form factor. However, a new report from Samsung suggests that there are much grander plans in store for this technology.

Samsung 'Galaxy X': Everything We Know So Far

The concept of an Android smartphone that you can fold up and put in your pocket is inching closer to reality. According to the latest leaked reports, Samsung's long-rumoured folding Galaxy X is set to make its debut in under a year. Here's what you need to know.

Read more

During an earnings call with investors yesterday, Samsung admitted that sales of the Galaxy S9 were below expectations. It has become apparent that offering a slightly improved flagship each year is no longer galvanising the buying public. Something new and exciting is needed.

In an accompanying press release, Samsung explained how it plans to turn things around in the future. Here's the relevant excerpt:

Looking to the future, the Company will continue to reinforce product competitiveness based on hardware leadership, by adopting cutting-edge technology and new form factors and gaining leadership in 5G.

This is interesting for a couple of reasons. The emphasis placed on "new form factors" suggests that folding phones will be a significant product category for the company. (Until now, analysts had been predicting a production run of as little as 300,000 units.)

Also of note is the mentioning of 5G in the same sentence. This can only mean that the 'future' that Samsung is referring to is just around the corner, rather than years away.

In other words, we should be getting our first glimpse of a folding Galaxy smartphone any month now. This is backed by a previous leak, which claimed the Samsung Galaxy X will make its official debut at CES 2019 in January.

According to the latest specification leak, Samsung's current prototype boasts no fewer than three OLED screens. Two of these combine into a seven-inch display, while the third appears on the phone's opposite side. Presumably, the third screen will allow you to access certain features when the phone is folded.

What do you guys think? Is a folding screen the adrenaline shot that the smartphone industry needs? Or will it be another gimmick that nobody needs? Tell us what you think in the comments!


Comments

    It will be dismissed as a gimmick when it is released. Other companies will copy, but don't sell well because people don't see the point. But after two or three iterations, people will start to see the benefits. It will be Phablets all over again.

    Smartphones through necessity are becoming larger and larger and as a result are increasingly unwieldy.

    Eventually it will get to the stage where they can't be carried without a man bag.

    So a Great idea!

      You know you can buy phones in different sizes to suit your needs, right?

        Except the 'need' for a large screen is at odds with portability. Just like laptops, they're a compromise. I have three 27" screens fitted my desktop, but my laptop is only 14". I can live with the smaller screen on the laptop because carrying around a 27" laptop would be annoying, but if order to use my desktop where possible.
        Same for a phone... A 12" OLED screen might be possible and it could still fit in your pocket when you fold it in half.

        You can't. They are all almost the same size. There are two sizes, large and extra large. If you want anything more compact, go to the bottom of the market in supermarkets or post offices and put up with poor performance, or there's the 2016 iPhone SE that's now remainder stock. So no, no different sizes.

          Sony still do excellent compact versions of their flagship phones, although annoyingly the US versions don't have fingerprint scanners for some reason.

    While it looks interesting, what’s the point?

    Who is going to carry around a phone that’s twice as thick as a normal phone?

      The same reason people carrying around giant phones bordering on the size of tablets. Because they can.

      Define normal? each phone is different and each generation gets thinner.
      Are you saying the same people who just a year or two ago carried around a phone that was that thick anyway wouldn't do it again?
      It wouldn't be any thicker than a last-gen phone or a current gen phone with a case on it.

      Last edited 12/09/18 9:33 am

      It would protect the screen from getting scratched, similar to the Nintendo DS which I still think is a wonderful design. Also a phone with a 7 inch screen wouldn't fit in most of my pockets. Flagship phones are so thin now that even folded in half I don't think it would be too thick to pocket. It won't appeal to everyone though.

    Drop in S9 sales (possibly S8 as well) may be due to that fact that most people don't actually like the curved screen. I have a S7 edge and miss being able to use a glass screen protector. The edge doesn't do anything for me.

    Folding the phone for protection would be good too.

      Interesting, I've never seen the point in getting a phone with a screen that wraps around the side, just looked like something to encourage breaking to me. Never held any strong opinion on it though, as I haven't tried it for myself!
      Much like I've never bought a curved or 3D TV...

    I would like a more compact smartphone so this is very interesting! My Z5 Compact had perfect hardware, the 4.6" screen was perfect but it was very laggy. This would be the best of both worlds. I would love it.

    Personally would prefer something shaped like a wide flexible bracelet that I can wear. Sort of like a wide Apple Watch, but with a screen curved to fit around the wrist like a slap band, instead of a watch band.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now