Monday 12 November 2018

Samsung ‘to announce foldable smartphone’

The technology giant is widely expected to use its developer conference to unveil a tablet device that folds into a phone.

(Martyn Landi/PA)
(Martyn Landi/PA)

By Martyn Landi, Press Association Technology Correspondent

Samsung is expected to unveil a foldable smartphone with a flexible screen at its developer conference later on Wednesday.

The Korean company is likely to reveal a new device with a tablet-sized screen that can then be folded in half to become similar in dimensions to a mobile phone.

The device, which could be called the Galaxy X, has been heavily rumoured for some time and the technology giant has given several hints that it will announce the phone – including changing the profile pictures on some social media accounts to show a folded version of the company logo.

Those images have since been removed.

In September, Samsung mobile boss DJ Koh said it was “time to deliver” a folding smartphone after the company had carried out market research which suggested there was a public appetite for such a device.

Samsung will not be the first to introduce a foldable device however.

US start-up Royole launched its own version last week – the FlexPai, which features a 7.8-inch screen that can be folded down to fit into a pocket.

Flexible displays are not new technology – curved television and smartphone screens have existed for some time – while several high-profile firms including LG and Lenovo have previously demonstrated screens that can be folded or rolled up, but few folding screen mobile products have so far made it to market.

Samsung’s developer conference in San Francisco is also expected to see the company discuss its new smart speaker – the Galaxy Home – in more detail.

The speaker, which was announced in August and is powered by Samsung’s virtual assistant Bixby, is seen as a new rival to the Amazon Echo, Google Home and Apple HomePod.

Press Association

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