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Samsung Galaxy X: foldable smartphone will be ready in 2019

Samsung has been playing with the idea of foldable smartphones for nearly a decade. It was eight years ago when they first showcased a flexible display, but it is now finally ready to turn concept into reality. Rumors about the Galaxy X keep emerging, but there's no chance of it launching this year.

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Samsung Galaxy X release date and price

The foldable smartphone has been a long time coming. Samsung has been playing with the idea for a long while, as you can see in the patents below, and this video from 2013:

There have been rumors about this device recently, some saying we would see a prototype soon, but our hopes have just been dashed. According to Korea Herald, the Principal Engineer of Samsung Display, Kim Tae-woong said that the bezel-less display is a success right now and there is no need to rush a technology that won't be ready for commercial launch until 2019. That basically confirms we won't be seeing a Galaxy X prototype at IFA this September.

Opinion by Brittany McGhee
Foldable smartphones will be a great way to follow the bezel-less display trend
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Samsung Galaxy X foldable display

Everyone wants a big screen, no one wants to carry it around. It's the paradox of the smartphone world that drives us crazy almost as much as battery life vs. battery size. Foldable screens are here to save the day.

First things first, the Galaxy X will be foldable, but we don't mean "foldable" like your old flip phone. There has been separate rumor that Samsung has been working on a different foldable device (without a foldable screen) that would have a hinge like a laptop, allowing two AMOLED screens to rest on top of each other. To illustrate, check out the patent below.

Samsung folding smartphone patent
This is a foldable device, not a foldable screen. The Galaxy X isn't a flip phone. / © Samsung

Below, you'll see the patent for a true foldable screen. This is what we mean when we say the Galaxy X will be foldable. You'll actually be able to bend the screen without snapping it in half and rendering it useless. How well this will hold up over time could be an issue. Constant bending and pressure could cause screen damage, especially if you sit down with your phone in your back pocket.

patent foldable smartphone
Bendable in the middle. / © Patently Mobile / Samsung

Hopefully Samsung will be able to design around a normal user's behavior patterns, which tend to include throwing your cell phone into bag full of stuff, dropping it, sitting on it and, even worse, letting your child play with it.

Below you can see an old example of Samsung's attempts at making a curved screen, which show a somewhat thick and bulky design concept. Could the Galaxy X also be this bulky, or will it be thin and elegant? The success of the idea depends on the execution and Samsung's ability to design with the user in mind.

samsung1
This old concept phone with a curved screen doesn't bode well for the design Galaxy X. / © Mobile Geeks

The Galaxy X will have 4K resolution according to SamMobile, but not much else is known about the display's specs yet. It is rumored that the touch area will extend beyond the front of the device to its edges, and work like a Galaxy S7 Edge in that respect.

Samsung Galaxy X design

The overall design of the Galaxy X could feature the same Galaxy DNA we're all used to, but there's no telling what could change due to the foldable screen. Camera, button, and fingerprint sensor placement could really affect the look of the device. The overall shape will obviously change, and rounded edges could make the device more ergonomic, both when folded and when open.

Opinion by Brittany McGhee
I would buy a smartphone with a foldable display
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Samsung Galaxy X features

The Galaxy X is likely to take advantage of biometric technologies for security, including the usual fingerprint scanner plus facial and eye recognition, and palm scanning.

What do you think are the advantages and disadvantages of foldable screen technology? Are you interested in trying the Galaxy X, or do you prefer to stick with the current style of phones until they've worked out all the kinks? Let us know in the comments.

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  • I prefer to stick with the current 'non-foldable' devices until Samsung has worked out all the rough edges.
    Let's see what the deal with foldable screens is. This tech will decrease the size of our devices. Why would we want that? I feel the basic issue is not that we find bigger screens difficult to put into our pockets. It's that we find bigger screens great when we're reading, watching videos or pictures. But while calling, texting, and numerous other activities like setting alarms and reminders, taking quick notes, we find a smaller screen operable with one hand more convenient. This problem doesn't get solved with a foldable screen. Nor does it get solved by the currently available technique of reducing the working area of the screen, since the effect is esthetically very unpleasant.

  • I personally have no interest in a foldable screen. I think that they will be easily damaged because of the soft flexible marital they have to be made of. It will also make the phone very thick, which I would not like in my pocket. like it

  • Man = would so much buy a foldable phone!!! always liked Phablet user experience but not so much once inside a Jeans pocket, I'd love to get a phone that folded is like a 5" and becomes a 6" or more...

    • Great point about jeans. Perhaps the fact whether you are wearing jeans or baggy trousers does make a difference in the type and size of mobile phone you choose to buy :-).

  • Mark
    • Admin
    6 months ago Link to comment

    I personally have no interest in a foldable screen. I think that they will be easily damaged because of the soft flexible marital they have to be made of. It will also make the phone very thick, which I would not like in my pocket. They will not flip open like the old flip phone you have to use both hands to open them. Just a gimmick as far as I am concerned.

  • Been watching and waiting to see the actual thing instead of strategicly released spins. Nothing that I need right now but I can see the advantage of a phone that will fold out to double as a tablet. Right now I'm content with my phone in one pocket and a tablet that for all intents and purposes they replace about 90% of my laptop use and are alot easier to keep with me.

    I kind of think for this to take off at some point the productivity side of things is going to have to catch up with the entertainment side. At some point you have to ask yourself how much you are willing to spend on a device that makes calls and sends text that I can play games and watch videos on.

    As it sits right now we already have that in a non foldable version with provider released tablets that can sync to your existing cell so you can make and receive calls and text from the tablet without the phone present all linked to the same cell number.

  • Gary Mead 6 months ago Link to comment

    A foldable screen is definitely an interesting idea, but the first foldable device mentioned (two screens overlapping) seems more durable, hence practical. Like most people here, I await an actual device, along with specs and pricing.

  • storm 6 months ago Link to comment

    Will it still be premium without glass on the back?

  • We have All be wanting for someone to come out with a new type of phone for ages,we keep hearing or seeing prototypes of the phones but no one as been able to release one yet,but the stumbling block for these types of phones being successful will be the Pricing of these phones,as phones seem to be getting more expensive nearly every year,as it shows today will the news that the New iPhone 8 from Apple could cost over £900,so it will be nice to see the pricing of these New phones first

  • I am pro Samsung and I would definately try a foldable one.I cannot wait for new technologies from Samsung

  • Large screen phones are getting more popular,so to have a phone that could be able to double the screen size would be good for watching videos or movies,In 2017 will we be Foldable Tablets as well ,it might be only the pricing of foldable phones that might stop them being succesful

  • The very far futuristic level is what experts are developing already: contactlenses with nanochips in it, projecting things like Internet content, drive maps and of course phone_screen.
    Question is will i live long enough see all that becoming reality 😆

  • Anthony 7 months ago Link to comment

    Time will tell inevitably, but I surely hope Samsung does this the right way and nails it after last year's Note 7 debacle. I'm excited to see what the future holds for smart phones in the way of new technologies.

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