Samsung’s futuristic foldable phone may not arrive until 2019
Sorry guys, but it looks like Samsung may not launch its long-rumored foldable "Galaxy X" phone this year after all.
A new report from The Korea Herald now says Samsung’s pushing plans to commercialize the foldable phone to 2019. The publication previously said Samsung was looking into producing more than 100,000 "fold-out devices" this year.
The report gives two reasons for the phone’s delay: (1) bezel-free displays — like the ones included in the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, and soon the Galaxy S8 and S8+ — continue to sell well, and (2) existing foldable screen technology isn’t ready yet.
"Because the bezel-free display currently sells well, we still have enough time to develop foldable display. The technology is expected to be mature around 2019," said Kim Tae-woong, Samsung Display’s principal engineer, according to the report.
With bezel-free displays producing healthy operating profits for Samsung, according to one analyst the Herald spoke to, the Korean electronics company sees no need to rush out with a foldable phone (however exciting it could be).
Barring more phone explosions (let’s pray there are no more), the delay’s probably for the better. Samsung has a tendency to rush out and release cool-looking products that are usually premature. For example, it took several years and iterations before its curved edges displays became a signature design style and got any practical purpose.
Beyond a previous report that says the smartphone can fold open into a 7-inch tablet, there’s not much to go on. It’s just way too early. The closest thing we have to what Samsung’s foldable phone could look like is this concept from 2013:
It looks pretty bulky, but at least it still fits in the guy’s front shirt pocket. Maybe two more years in development will be enough time to make things pretty.