South Korea’s Samsung showcased its Galaxy Round smartphone, which uses a flexible display to create a device with a curved body.
Available imminently in its home market, it features the “world’s first commercialised full HD super AMOLED flexible display”. The screen measures 5.7-inches.
The handset maker has used the curved body to enable new features, such as its “roll effect”, which enables owners to check date, time, missed calls and battery life information by waking the device with a gentle roll.
It also features a “gravity effect” to deliver visual interaction with the screen by tilting the device.
The company said the device is available in South Korea in “luxury brown” with more colours to be available soon. No details were given of possible international rollouts.
While the headline feature of Galaxy Round has been seen in some camps as little more than a gimmick, it does provide the company with a form of differentiation – both within its own Android product line, and from other smartphone makers.
And it also enables Samsung to boost its claims to being an innovator, rather than a follower, in the mobile devices sector. Some critics have said its success is built on seeing what others do and building on that, rather than taking the lead.
The move also indicates the benefits Samsung has by having a deep control of its supply chain. This enables it not only to source advanced components, but also to swiftly integrate them into products.
Earlier this week, LG Electronics said it has started mass-production of flexible screens for smartphones, with the intention of using it in products “next year”.