New reports indicate Samsung may alter the design of its next foldable phone. The new phone is likely to sport a clamshell form factor folding from the top. This would not be different from the feature phones you would have used. For want of a better moniker, we are calling it the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2. It appears to be certain that the South Korean company would want to launch the device in the first quarter of 2020. This plan may partly depend on how the Samsung Galaxy Fold does in the coming months. The interesting news is about the material that will be used for the display screen cover in the new foldable phone. The expectation is that the existing plastic polyimide layer will be replaced by an Ultra-Thin Glass (UTG) surface.
Brittle but Better Surface
The reason Samsung is contemplating changing the screen cover is that the polyimide material is prone to scratches. Every little scratch will show up. The ultra-thin glass alternative being considered is going to be a brittle surface if the user were to drop the device. The other issue with UTG is the cost of manufacturing it. The layer is as thin as 0.1mm and there is considerable loss while getting the component right. You may be familiar with names like Corning, NEG, and Asahi in the specialized glass making business. The source Samsung is turning to is a combination of a German firm SCHOTT AG and DOWOO INSYS. While the glass will be made by the former, the latter has developed a proprietary process of treating the glass.
Samsung May Price the Successor Lower
The same report goes on to predict that Samsung may decide to keep the price of the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2 much lower at around the $1,500 level. The Samsung Galaxy Fold is now selling at a tad less than $2,000. There is the suggestion that the display size itself may be lower at 6.7-inches. That would cut a little over half an inch off the first edition of Samsung’s foldable smartphone.
The bottom line would be how successful the experiment with this new ultra-thin Glass turns out to be, particularly at the fold. The material has to be tested multiple times to check if it holds when folded and opened frequently. There is a slim possibility that the company may switch back to the polyimide plastic screen cover.