Samsung has been toying around with foldable screens ever since 2013, but five years later, we’ve yet to see one hit the mass market. That could all change before the end of the year, according to a report from Samsung’s native South Korea.
Sources within the smartphone industry have been buzzing about a Samsung screen with a foldable phone going into production around November — although if it’s true, the phones will be not only extremely expensive, but enormous as well.
Information comes from ETNews, a South Korean tech news site. Citing “representative (sic) from multiple industries that are familiar with this matter,” staff reporter Yun Keonil suggested that Samsung is in the process of taking the foldable phone from concept to reality. The foldable screens will go into production in March, he wrote, with panels to follow in September, and final construction in November.
According to Yun’s information, the foldable phones would feature 7.3-inch OLED displays. If that sounds like a lot to keep in your pocket, remember that these phones could theoretically fold into much smaller conformations, then unfold into tablet-style devices when owners have enough room to do so. Of course, OLED screens don’t come cheap, which will probably drive an already-expensive gadget’s asking price up further.
While the ETNews story does not speculate about the upcoming device’s designation, similar rumors have suggested that Samsung might wind up calling a foldable phone the Galaxy X.
Samsung itself, however, declined to confirm Yun’s suspicions.
“It is true that we are developing foldable smartphones,” a Samsung representative told ETNews. “However, we cannot confirm any schedules for mass-production or release of foldable smartphones due to our business strategies.”
While it seems likely that Samsung wants to get a foldable phone to a mass market sooner or later, the timetable is still anyone’s guess. Seeing the phone come out in December or early 2019 would represent an exciting new step in the smartphone race, but without hard sources or confirmation directly from Samsung, a “reliable” rumor is still just a rumor. We’ll just have to wait 11 months and find out.