Samsung is reported to be assessing several more form factor options for its foldable screens, as it looks to stake a claim on the nascent market.
While the company was the first mainstream manufacturer to announce a foldable device in the shape of its Galaxy Fold, it was followed swiftly (and arguably usurped) by Huawei’s Mate X. Other vendors including Motorola and Xiaomi are believed to be exploring the technology.
Bloomberg wrote Samsung giant is now looking at a clamshell-type device which folds at the top, and a model which folds away from the user, akin to Mate X. Galaxy Fold’s screen bends inward, making it necessary to add another screen to use when closed.
The clamshell is apparently more advanced in the design process and could even be unveiled later this year: as with Galaxy Fold (and Samsung’s clamshell feature phones), it would include an additional external screen. The latter is in prototype form and, the news agency said, will follow later.
Bloomberg noted that with devices yet to find their way into the hands of consumers, it is unclear what buyer preferences to be or which new use cases will be enabled. This means vendors are more likely to experiment, leading to diverse designs which contrast with the uniformity seen elsewhere in the smartphone market.
The outlet also said Samsung is working to address durability concerns, particularly around a crease which appears after a device has been folded “about 10,000 times”. One option is free screen replacement which, while possible on a $2,000 niche device, will not scale should foldable screens become a more mainstream option.
An earlier ETNews report said Samsung is also looking to supply folding screens to other manufacturers. In addition to its own market-leading smartphone business, Samsung is also an established component supplier to rivals.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back