A little history
While there is a variety of flagship smartphones on the market, a new contender may steal the crown by offering a unique (as of now) feature: a flexible display.
Discussed for a long while under the moniker Samsung Galaxy F, the smartphone started as a concept image a few years ago. The technology available at the time was too costly in order for the device to be profitable without sporting a hefty price tag.
Samsung never kept the project a secret but details were (and they still are) scarce. Some rumors believe that the smartphone could see the light of day in late 2018 and certain actions by Samsung hint that the claim may be actually true.
A recent tweet by Samsung Mobile that advertises the company’s Samsung Developer conference has raised hope, as it notes that something futuristic may be soon unveiled. The text ‘’ Where Now Meets Next’’ can certainly be interpreted as a hint, while an animation suggests the possibility of a flexible device, as what appears to be a single line unfolds to become two lines united in the middle.
The tweet led many fans to speculate since Samsung has made some interesting unveils during previous conferences. Many are excited by the premise since it would mean that the long-awaited dream will finally become real.
Why are people so excited about a folding phone? We should start by clarifying that a folding phone should not be confused with the once popular flip phones, like the well-known Motorola RAZR.
Foldable phones could be used folded like a regular phone or folded out in order to become like a tablet in order to do various activities. Once you are done, you can fold it back to its phone form in a blink. The main benefit is that you will carry a two-in-one, namely a tablet that can be used for Netflix and a smartphone that still fits in your pocket.
Samsung Galaxy X Design challenge
As one would expect, designing a device with a flexible display or body is not easy, and it becomes even more complicated when you are working on a smartphone. The greatest engineering challenge is to adapt the components in order to fit the design of the device, while also keeping it flexible yet sturdy at the same time.
Samsung’s CEO has previously mentioned that most of the functions offered by the device will be accessible in folded mode, which hints that the may be working on some exclusive features available only after you unfold it.
When it comes to the aspect, most renders infer that the device will have two displays, a smaller one that is used when the device is folded and a bigger one that could reach the size of a small tablet when it is spread. The previously mentioned animation hints that it may work like a book with the small screen as the ‘’cover’’ and a larger screen in the middle.
Specifications are thought to be generous, as we are talking about a dual-screen device that will certainly need some processing power. The foldable screen will be around 7.3-inch in size, with a smaller 4.6 inch external or ‘’cover’’ display and it is considered that both screens will use OLED technology. At least 6 GB of RAM is also expected, while a custom-made Exynos or a modified Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 could be used.
Since the well-known Gorilla Glass is too rigid for a foldable phone, Samsung may opt to use a scratch-resistant polymer cover, currently made by a well-known Japanese company.
The competition is not sleeping as LG and Huawei are already developing their own folding smartphones, while Apple and Microsoft are doing some research& development before they decide to join the race.